Dennis Barnette, a white Cincinnati police officer, called a Black woman the “N-word” as he tried to take her into custody at a nightclub. It was recorded on the body camera of another officer at the scene.
Cincinnati Police Chief Eliot Isaac wrote in an email to his supervisor, City Manager Patrick Duhaney, on Wednesday night that Barnette used the racial slur while arresting the woman on Dec. 22, according to The Cincinnati Enquirer. Isaac said that the woman allegedly resisted arrest and pushed the officer. She is facing charges of assaulting an officer.
Isaac said Barnette’s actions toward the woman would not be tolerated.
“This type of behavior is unacceptable and will not be tolerated inside the department,” he said in the email.
Barnette was placed on desk duty and his police powers taken away as an internal investigation takes place. But the Cincinnati branch of the NAACP said that he should be fired.
The organization released the following statement:
“The Cincinnati Branch of the NAACP strongly condemns the racist comment from Cincinnati Police Officer Dennis Barnette while in the performance of his duties he used the N-word directed towards an African American female while responding to a call.
“The use of a racial slur has no place in society, nor working for a police department that claims to be a beacon of bias free policing and accountability. The word used is hateful, and coming from someone with the authority to use deadly force, is dangerous to those whom he is sworn to serve and protect.
“Officer Barnette’s actions disgraced not only him but the department and city that employ him. The tone is set at the top and we expect those in authority to act accordingly and terminate this officer from his position and that he not be allowed to serve as a police officer.”
Yolanda Miller, the mother of the woman who was called the racial slur, is on the executive board of the Cincinnati NAACP.
“He was wrong,” Miller told WPCO. “He does not deserve to be a police officer in Cincinnati, Ohio, but not only in Cincinnati, anywhere, because if that came out with her, it’s in his heart.”