Target: Franklin Adderley, Fort Lauderdale Chief of Police
Goal: Fire police officer for using excessive and unnecessary force on homeless man who was trying to use a public restroom.
A police officer has come under public scrutiny after a video surfaced showing the officer pushing a homeless man to the ground and then slapping the man across the face. The incident reportedly took place at a bus terminal in Downtown Fort Lauderdale where the homeless man, Bruce Laclair, said he was simply trying to use a public restroom.
The officer, Victor Ramirez, was reportedly working off-duty. Fort Lauderdale police said he received annual use of force training. Obviously, Ramirez wasn’t thinking of that training when he committed such an awful act. Ramirez is currently on paid leave while an investigation takes place.
The City of Fort Lauderdale has already been under fire recently for establishing an ordinance forbidding people from feeding the homeless. This video showing a malicious attack against a homeless man is just adding insult to injury, and someone needs to be held accountable.
Paid leave doesn’t sound like much of a punishment for using excessive force for no reason on a homeless man. By signing this petition, you will urge the Fort Lauderdale Chief of Police to fire Officer Ramirez and send a clear message that there are consequences for repulsive actions like this.
Dear Chief Adderley,
A video of Officer Victor Ramirez has surfaced showing the off-duty officer shoving a homeless man to the ground and slapping him across the face so hard that the strike could be heard in the video. The homeless man said he was just trying to use a pubic restroom, and the video doesn’t seem to show him doing anything wrong. The fact that one of your officers felt it was okay to act in such manner, especially when tensions are so high with issues surrounding the homeless community in your town, is sickening.
Officer Ramirez needs to be held accountable for his alleged actions. The video demonstrates a blatant disrespect not only for another human, but for a human who is unfortunate enough to be homeless. This behavior cannot be tolerated, and an officer who behaves like Ramirez should not carry the responsibility of protecting and serving the public. I urge you to remove Officer Ramirez from his position.
[Your Name Here]
Photo credit: lukasz-dunikowski via Flickr