Police Officer Fired After Getting 'Pure Evil' Tattoo
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Featured Image Credit: Alamy/WLWT News
A Cincinnati Police officer has been fired from his department after getting the words 'Pure Evil' tattooed across his fingers.
Former officer Eric Weyda disregarded department policy when having the words written in red and black ink, violating the rule that prohibits tattoos on the face, neck, head and hands.
After superiors noticed his ink, Weyda was reassigned to the impound lot to 'limit his public exposure', however is said to have refused to have the tattoos removed.
The department determined the message on his hands had 'the very real possibility to cause extraordinary damage to police community relations both locally and nationally', and as a result he was fired for insubordination and failure of good behaviour approximately four months after superiors first noticed his tattoos.
Explaining the decision, Weyda's superiors said: "Officer Weyda's tattoos are a violation that is ongoing and permanent. Additionally, Officer Weyda's tattoos do not promote the professional and neutral image of the Cincinnati Police Department and are injurious to the public trust."
The officer is said to have 'showed remorsefulness for obtaining the tattoo and acknowledged a lack of discretion since he obtained the tattoo in December 2021', according to a summary of his disciplinary hearing cited by WLWT News, and he claimed the words should not be considered as a phrase, but instead as two separate entities.
"Officer Weyda stated, like all of his tattoos, his hand tattoo has a personal message to him, and the words 'pure evil' should not be observed as one message. Officer Weyda explained the words 'pure' and 'evil' are separate from each other and the words themselves have separate meanings," the summary explained.
Weyda told investigators the tattoo was meant to represent a 'struggle between good and evil'.
Following his dismissal, the Fraternal Order of Police – the police union – agreed to represent Weyda to help him try and get the decision overturned.
Union President Dan Hils commented: "The FOP represents all Cincinnati police officers when they participate in the grievance process outlined in our collective bargaining agreement.
"Every officer is entitled to a fair hearing and that's what will take place here."
Prior to his reassignment to the impound lot, Weyda was 'counselled' for a month for a previous incident in his car in a police station car park, and had also been disciplined throughout his career for being absent and using coarse language when answering calls for assistance, among other reasons.
The officer had also received his worst-ever marks in an annual review in 2020, at which point he was told he needed to improve his compliance in numerous areas including policies and procedures, customer service, grooming and dress and teamwork.
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