The Los Angeles Police Department is conducting an internal investigation after reports that a Valentine’s Day card with a photo of African-American George Floyd, who died in custody, and the caption “You take my breath away,” was distributed to employees, the Los Angeles Times reported, citing the statement of Police Chief Michael Moore.
It is reported that the card refers to Floyd’s phrase “I can’t breathe”, which he said before his death, and later became a symbol of the anti-racist protests in the United States. This “valentine” was reported to the management of the police department by one of the officers. According to him, police officers “passed it around” to one another.
Moore said Monday the police officer who filed the complaint will have to answer a series of questions so police management can determine how and where the card might have appeared in the workplace, as well as who might be involved.
“Our investigation should determine whether the allegations are credible and also reinforce our zero-tolerance for anything with racist attitudes,” said Moore, whose words are quoted by the publication.
Last year, a wave of protests and riots against police violence and racism swept through many major U.S. cities and then several countries around the world following the death in Minneapolis of African-American George Floyd in police custody. Videos surfaced online showing police officers handcuffing Floyd, throwing him down, and piling three men on top of him, with one of them stepping on his neck with his knee. Floyd in the video says several times that he can’t breathe, then quietens down. One police officer was charged with murder, the other three with accessory to murder.