Twitter suspends ‘killer cop’ account in response to police union lawsuit
Twitter has suspended the account @killercops1984 for violating its rules and policies against inciting violence against police officers, Los Angeles Police Protective League officials said Monday, the week after the union took legal action against the owner of a website that lists bounties for the killing of police officers.
“We are appreciative of Twitter acting swiftly to take down this dangerous website that called for the murder of Los Angeles police officers,” Craig Lally, president of the police that represents Los Angeles Police Department officers, said in a statement. “This was not about freedom of speech or public discourse, this was about protecting officers and their families and for that we are grateful that this site is suspended.”
According to LAPPL officials, the LAPD released the pictures, names and work locations of 9,000 officers through California Public Records Act requests. That included those who work in sensitive assigned and undercover operations, a release the department has dubbed a mistake.
“As a result of the LAPD’s negligence in releasing the pictures, names and work locations of officers, even those working in undercover operations, the owner of the ‘killer cop’ website was able to download this sensitive informaiton, post it online and place a bounty to be paid to anyone who kills a Los Angeles police officer,” Lally said in a statement.
Attorneys for the LAPPL also served a cease-and-desist notice on Twitter and Google seeking the immediate removal of the “killer cop” website from the platforms. Twitter complied with the request from LAPPL on Sunday.
“We certainly hope that Twitter and Google act with a sense of urgency to remove this threatening domestic terrorism site,” Robert Rico, general counsel of the LAPPL, said in a statement. “The colossal blunder perpetuated by the LAPD in releasing this sensitive information must be met with a zero-tolerance approach by these two social media companies, which should include a lifetime ban of the owner of this site.”
Tom Saggau, spokesman for LAPPL, said the lawsuit filed by the union is not against the Stop LAPD Spying Coalition, which filed the original public records requests for the information about officers, but targets the owner of the “killer cop” website.
“We’re looking into all websites to see legally what we can do,” Jamie McBride, an LAPPL director, told City News Service. “However, the ‘killer cop’ website was of the utmost important to our membership and for officers’ safety.”