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Miami Beach Police Accused of Assaulting Gay Man to Be Fired

Back in February 2010, I posted about Miami Beach police harassing and arresting a gay man after he witnessed them abusing a suspect. The gay man, Harold Strickland (pictured), was on the phone with 911 reporting their assault when the cops came after him. The ACLU filed suit against the Miami Beach police last November.

Strickland Now, the Miami Herald reports that the two officers involved are being fired:

Officers Frankly Forte and Eliut Hazzi learned Monday of the city’s intent to kick them off the police force and were relieved of duty without pay, according to City Manager Jorge Gonzalez. He said a hearing in which the officers will have a chance to fight for their jobs has been scheduled for Aug. 1.

***

After a nearly year-long investigation, prosecutors also declined to press charges against Hazzi and Forte, saying there was insufficient evidence to prove the officers’ guilt to a jury. Instead, they suggested Miami Beach police take “appropriate action.”

Miami Beach police issued a statement Monday saying that although the “investigation concluded that no crime could be proven in relation to the officers’ actions, serious questions were raised about their conduct during the incident.”

While the criminal investigation is closed, the ACLU case is still on. Strickland is seeking more than $15,000 in damages.

Said ACLU spokesman Derek Newton of the firing: “It’s a very satisfying outcome, assuredly, to demonstrate clearly that officers who violate the public trust and engage in misconduct will be subject to consequences. We think that’s very positive and encouraging. We hope that it sets a standard for other communities in the region and state in addressing police misconduct.”

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  1. This is good news. While visiting Miami a few months back - friends and I went to dinner at an italian place. My friend came in Gucci jeans - and a table of straights commented rudely. My friend went to the table to ask if she had seen enough of the jeans (they were making a spectacle of pointing and commenting with words like "Fags" et. al. The husband got up and punched my friend knocking him down - then came after the rest of us. I called the cops. When they arrived (30 minutes later) - they refused to allow us to press assault charges claiming "they couldn't see bruises, and we had walked into the restaurant to avoid problems - so there was no issue any more". They refused to talk to witnesses (there were several) - and when we protested were told that we would be thrown in jail for disrespecting an officer. Miami is OFF our vacation map forever.

    Posted by: tommyz | Jul 26, 2011 11:29:16 AM


  2. Once again, the gays come up and clean up a city, and the straights move back and proceed to destroy it.

    Posted by: J. Page | Jul 26, 2011 11:49:28 AM


  3. i remember when this happened. how is there no evidence? the guy was on the phone as he was being assaulted. and dont get me started on how it took a damn year for this to be resolved. that being said, they had a year to potentially look for other employment. im sure they will get a stellar letter of recommendation elsewhere from their bosses. will getting fired really "hurt" them?

    Posted by: andy | Jul 26, 2011 11:49:28 AM


  4. Well, I'm glad to see the cops are getting fired. Cops do a good job of protecting their own, and no one else, which is why theres probably no evidence. They really need to make graduating Grade 6 a requirement for being a cop.

    Posted by: Aaron | Jul 26, 2011 12:00:34 PM


  5. Good news. Miami used to be gay-friendly. Not anymore. The city in general has been completely taken over by trash, and crime rates in general have rose accordingly.

    The cops in the city have always been garbage, but it's good to see that action has been taken here. Awful this would happen in the first place.

    Posted by: Francis | Jul 26, 2011 1:58:40 PM


  6. Who cares if they get hired somewhere else as long as it is not a police force. Those BIGOT police officers deserved to be fired. I hope this is a warning to other enforcement officers that discrimination does not pay.

    Posted by: FunMe | Jul 27, 2011 1:32:08 AM


  7. After living and working in Florida for over twenty years in an industry that hires both full time ex Police officers as well as moonlighting current officers, I can assure anyone interested in the subject, that Florida Police are as anti Gay as any group could possibly be. It was after retiring, and leaving Florida, before I "Came Out". To do so while working would have been the end of my job. I know, because I was told, more than once, by corporate management to fire some excellent employees because someone "Upstairs" THOUGHT they MIGHT be Gay.

    I never understood why any self respecting out of state Gay, or Lesbian, would ever go to Florida to spend their money in a place that hated them so much. Just listen to the present Florida Republican office holders. Nothing has changed.

    Posted by: Jerry6 | Jul 28, 2011 10:29:59 PM


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