Ohio: Police Officer Sues Social Media Users who Claimed He Used Racist Hand Signal

Oh this is really good!

Earlier today I saw the news from last month that conservative cartoonist Ben Garrison has filed a multi-million dollar defamation lawsuit against the Anti-Defamation League which claims he published an anti-Semitic cartoon. Read about the case here.

Now I see that a Cincinnati Police officer isn’t going to take it laying down when citizens complained to the Citizens Complaint Authority (do you have one of these where you live???) claiming he used a ‘racist’ hand gesture at a public meeting held to discuss defunding the police.

Maybe the case of Nick Sandmann is just the catalyst we all needed! Go after these jerks whenever possible!

From WCPO-9:

Cincinnati police officer sues over being ‘portrayed as a white supremacist’

A Cincinnati police officer filed a lawsuit against four people, alleging their social media posts and complaints to the Citizens Complaint Authority falsely portrayed him as a racist and white supremacist after he made the “OK” gesture in public at City Hall.

For a chuckle, be sure to read what the ADL says about the Okay Hand Signal! https://www.adl.org/education/references/hate-symbols/okay-hand-gesture

The suit, filed July 22 in Hamilton County Court of Common Pleas, says police officer M.R. (who filed under a pseudonym) had been working crowd control in a noisy hallway during a Budget and Finance Committee meeting on June 24. A large number of protesters, fueled by outrage over the killing of George Floyd, had gathered to express their opinions about the city budget. Some wanted to defund the police.

And the hallway was noisy, according to the suit. Someone asked M.R. about another officer who recently left the scene; he made the “OK” sign by touching his thumb and index finger together.

NPR reported the Anti-Defamation League added the “OK” gesture to its “Hate on Display” database in 2019, saying some people associate the symbol with white supremacy.

The Southern Poverty Law Center has noted that the association started on the online imageboard 4Chan,where far-right users announced a coordinated hoax meant to bait left-leaning portions of the internet into embarrassing themselves by misidentifying the OK gesture as one linked to white supremacists.

Then real white supremacists started to use it. The SPLC report the gesture, although not exclusively or even mostly used by white supremacists, can be an effective public dogwhistle for some on the far right because it is so commonplace — like the original hoax, “what it’s about most of the time is a deliberate attempt to ‘trigger liberals’ into overreacting to a gesture so widely used that virtually anyone has plausible deniability built into their use of it in the first place.”

[….]

Judge Shanahan also granted anonymity to the officer who filed the suit while proceedings continue. A series of restraining orders will prohibit those named in the lawsuit from “doxxing” the officer, which means releasing his name or personal information with malicious intent. The officer’s attorneys said releasing that information puts the officer and his family in danger.

[….]

The lawsuit names four people as defendants: Julie Niesen, James Noe, Terhas White and Alissa Gilley.

Niesen and Noe posted false content about the plaintiff on social media, according to the suit.

White, who was present at the June 24 meeting, was “seeking to create conflict” by asking the plaintiff a series of questions, the lawsuit said. The next day, White filed a complaint with the Citizen Complaint Authority, in which White “falsely accused Plaintiff of using the ‘white power’ hand signal,” the suit said.

There is more here.

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