Cincinnati police detective who used racial slurs at a nightclub has been reinstated

CINCINNATI (WXIX) — A Cincinnati police detective has been returned to active duty after being suspended in early September for uttering a racial slur while working on an off-duty detail at a nightclub.

FOP President Dan Hils confirmed the reinstatement of CPD Det. Joehonny Reese Tuesday night.

Reese, who is black, was working off-duty at Longworth Hall’s Energy nightclub on September 2 when bar security dragged out a drunk, underage white teenager, previously described by Hils.

The teenager physically threatened bar security staff as well as Reese and another off-duty officer, according to Hils.

Officers reportedly asked the teen to leave, but they stayed, continued to threaten officers and repeatedly called them “fake n-words,” Hils said.

Bodycam allegedly shows the teenager’s attempt to assault the officers, prompting the officers to taser and arrest the teenager.

During the encounter, Reese allegedly used the n-word telling the teenager that he, Reese, would not be an n-word, according to Hils.

Reese was suspended a week after the incident.

In its conclusion, the CPD Internal Investigations Section wrote that Constable Reese never used the racial slur “as an expression of prejudice or to degrade the character or race of the teenager”.

Acting Cincinnati Police Chief Teresa Theetge noted that it is standard practice in the department to temporarily suspend police powers pending an investigation into the use of a racial slur. be completed, whatever the circumstances.

City Manager Sheryl Long expressed support for the temporary suspension, which she said is “expressly defined in the collective agreement between the FOP and the city.”

Long continued, “Each case must be given the same thorough investigation and critical review to avoid undermining the legitimacy of the process.”

Hils spoke out against the suspension last week.

He issued a statement on Tuesday evening which read in part: ‘I appreciate the City Manager’s insistence that the police department provide a resolution quickly. Detective Reese received a verbal counseling notice for foul language. Even this minor documentation was unwarranted.

Last month, members of the Cincinnati City Council proposed a “zero tolerance policy” for any police officer who used a racial slur, regardless of the circumstances. The policy has not yet been adopted or implemented.

Previous cases of CPD employees using racial slurs have resulted in more severe penalties.

Former CPD officer Rose Valentino was suspended and later fired after she used the slur during an incident with a teenager outside a Western Hills high school.

CPD officer Kelly Drach served a 56-hour suspension from May 20-28 after admitting to using a racial slur on duty twice in late 2021 after speaking to fraudulent telemarketers on the phone.

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