NEW YORK (CBSNewYork) – Two Louisiana police officers have been fired over a Facebook post allegedly suggesting U.S. Congresswoman Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez should be shot.
Gretna Police Officer Charlie Rispoli, a 14-year veteran, called the former bartender a “vile idiot” who “needs a round… and I don’t mean the kind that she used to serve.” Fellow Officer Angelo Varisco reportedly liked the post.
The department said the officers violated its social media policy.
Gretna Police Chief Arthur Lawson called the incident “an embarrassment to our department.”
“These officers certainly acted in a manner which was unprofessional alluding to a violent act to be conducted against a sitting U.S. congressman,” he said during a press conference.
The post was reportedly taken down by Friday afternoon.
Rispoli had shared a fake news story with a headline that falsely quoted Ocasio-Cortez as saying U.S. military service members are “getting paid too much.” Snopes.com disproved the story as completely fabricated, but Rispoli went ahead and shared it on his Facebook page with a threatening comment.
The Facebook post linked to a satire blog which had also posted fake news stories saying Ocasio-Cortez proposed banning motorcycles nationwide, blamed police for killing more people than gangs in Chicago, and offered to donate her brain to science.
The site posts made-up quotes and false news reports which are being mistaken for actual news reports and shared across social media.
“We found that more targeted, discriminatory tweets posted in a city related to a higher number of hate crimes,” NYU College of Global Public Health professor Rumi Chunara said.