A Michigan police officer has been placed on administrative leave after a family recently discovered several Confederate flags and an application to the Ku Klux Klan framed to the wall during an open house tour of the officer’s residence. The cop remains under investigation and has not provided a reasonable explanation for displaying racist paraphernalia while providing tours to his home to prospective buyers.
On May 7, Rob Mathis of Muskegon posted on Facebook that he saw several Confederate flags and a KKK application on display at a police officer’s house while touring the residence. After observing at least three Confederate flags throughout the home, Mathis and his family noticed photos of the homeowner in an officer’s uniform before finding an unfilled KKK application framed on the wall.
“I was just so disgusted,” Mathis told MLive. “I told my son let’s go, we’re getting out of here. This is a Klan house, really, we have to go right now… It was basically telling me, whites only to purchase his house. People who have that type of hate in their heart, he wanted those people.
“The stuff that was on the walls was like, ‘You don’t want this house, stay away, keep out.’”
On Thursday, the city of Muskegon released the following statement: “The Muskegon Police Department has opened an internal investigation after a social media post was brought to our attention accusing an officer of being in possession of certain items associated with a white supremacy group. The officer was immediately placed on administrative leave, pending a thorough investigation.
“The City of Muskegon requests your patience as we thoroughly investigate this issue. Further information will be available upon completion of the investigation.”
Although Muskegon Officer Charles Anderson can claim that his First Amendment rights protect him from being an alleged member of the Klan, the Muskegon Police Department Policy and Procedure Order states that an officer shall “perform all duties impartially, without favor or affection or ill will and without regard to status, sex, race, religion, political belief or aspiration.”
The manual also states, “They will conduct themselves in appearance behavior, and demeanor in a manner that inspires confidence and respect for the position of public trust they hold.”
“I feel sick to my stomach knowing that I walk to the home of one of the most racist people in Muskegon hiding behind his uniform and possibly harassing people of color and different nationalities,” wrote Mathis on Facebook.
Officer Anderson remains on administrative leave pending the investigation into the incident.