Missouri police instructor fired for alleged use of racial slur during training

A white police instructor in Missouri was terminated for allegedly using racial slurs during an officer training session, department officials said.

St. Louis County Police Chief Mary Barton fired the unidentified contract instructor late last month after initially suspending her as an investigation was conducted.

“It has now been brought to conclusion and the existing contracts with the instructor and her company have been terminated,” Barton wrote in an Oct. 28 letter to officers obtained by The Post.

“To those that brought this behavior to the department’s attention, I extend to you my sincerest appreciation.”

Officers first alerted supervisors about the instructor – later identified in reports as Jan Mirikitani – on Oct. 20, KSDK reported. Sources said she used a racial slur during the session and claimed EBT cards should not be used to pay for hair or nail treatments, according to the station.

The St. Louis Post-Dispatch on Thursday identified Mirikitani as the instructor involved. Mirikitani denied the allegations.

“This is not what it appears,” she wrote the newspaper in an email. “We are living in a time when an allegation is accepted as truth, regardless of all remaining facts and context.”

Mirikitani has been a trainer and consultant for local and federal police forces for more than three decades, the newspaper reported, citing the Law Enforcement Training Advisory Commission’s website.

She has also led more than 25 courses throughout her career, including sessions titled “Hire for Character” and “Communicating with an Angry Public,” the Post-Dispatch reported.

Mirikitani is not licensed by the Peace Officer Standards and Training Commission, which has no record of the woman, a spokesman for the Missouri Department of Public Safety told the newspaper.

But police academies can contract unlicensed instructors, spokesman Mike O’Connell told the Post-Dispatch.

The St. Louis-based Ethical Society of Police said the incident marked the third known usage in the past several years of derogatory terms by local officers in training sessions, KSDK reported.

“We believe that additional steps are needed to ensure such an incident will not occur again,” the organization wrote in a letter. “We are asking for better checks and balances at [St. Louis County Municipal Police & Fire Academy] and regular evaluations by class participants.”

A St. Louis County police spokesman declined additional comment when reached by The Post on Friday.

Share this article:

Source: Read Full Article