CREWE, Va. (WRIC) — Two Virginia police officers are facing termination after posting what the police chief is calling inappropriate videos on the social media platform TikTok.
On Monday evening, the Crewe Town Council held a hearing allowing the officers to tell their side of the story. A dozen people were out at the Crewe Police Department in support of those officers, saying those inappropriate videos shouldn’t be enough cause to fire them.
Officers Caleb Lafferty and Rondell White are facing termination from the police department, even though they told WRIC they took the “inappropriate” videos down months ago when the previous police chief asked them to.
“The termination is a little excessive,” Lafferty told WRIC on Monday.
The officers said new Police Chief Alfredo Ferrer implemented a new social media policy and said the videos violated it.
“The way things are happening right now with, I guess, racism and everything, we’re trying to show people that, you know, different cultures can come together, we can have fun, we can have, you know, a little dark humor,” White said.
Crewe resident Alex Trim was at the protest Monday and gave his opinion on the situation.
“I hate to see us lose two police officers who care so much about this community over something as foolish as making comedy videos,” he said.
At a hearing Monday, town manager Brian Thrower quickly shut down questions from media and the public after residents asked why there wasn’t much public notice for the hearing.
When asked why WRIC was notified only about half an hour before the public hearing began, Thrower said, “We follow state procedures on notifications.”
After Blackstone resident Chris Page asked Thrower why the public wasn’t given the required 3-day notice, Thrower quickly said, “That’s all the questions we’re going to take right now,” and exited the building.
Page told WRIC he is a Freedom of Information Act advocate and plans to file an intent to sue Tuesday over not having proper notice for the meeting.
The town council took no action Monday and is allowing the officers to find an attorney before the next hearing. The officers will remain on paid administrative leave until then.
If those officers are terminated, that will leave the town of Crewe with two police officers.