The Coordination Forum for Countering Antisemitism

Miami officer fired for calling Jewish holy scripture ‘trash’ on cellphone video

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A veteran Miami police officer, suspended two months ago when a cellphone video surfaced of him tossing out Jewish holy scripture and calling it “trash,” lost his job Thursday.

Miami Police Chief Jorge Colina fired 13-year veteran Roberto Destephan, a former leader at the city’s police union, after investigating the incident and over concerns that the officer’s credibility would be stained when testifying in future cases.

“There’s a lot of elements. It isn’t just what he said, but what are the consequences of that. Do we lose the public’s trust? Can we expect him to go out and do the right thing as a police officer? What happens in court if he makes an arrest? Does his character now come into question?” Colina said. “So these are things that if we have a victim, and he made a good arrest, is that victim going to find justice if he’s the primary officer testifying?”