Dear Chief Skinner and City Manager Hughes:
As a former resident of the DC Metro area, I occasionally like to catch up on events in my old hometown. I recently heard about an incident involving citizens openly carrying handguns in a restaurant in Manassas. Personally, I am not an advocate of open of firearms, and I am not writing to rant about the right to bear arms. The purpose of my correspondence is to express my, for lack of a better word, shock at the conduct of some of the officers involved. I am referring specifically to the electronic correspondence between several police officers and other city employees contained in the material released to the VCDL as the result of a FOIA request.
Among other places, you can find the materials in question here: http://www.vcdl.org/Tonys/MCPD_FOIA_Response.pdf
If you would direct your attention to the two electronic mail messages contained on pages 11 and 12 of that document, exchanged between Rickey Clodfelter, Tina Pannell, Joshua D. Thompson, Marc D. Hittle, Chad Hyland, and Carrie Sutton. In particular, please notice the following paragraph:
"My guess is the over-compensating assclowns at Tony's were hyper-aware of all this, and that's why they started crying like little babies when their event got spoiled by the whole 'let's get the owner to tell them to get the **** out' thing. Speaking of these assclowns, you can see their website here: http:www.vcdl.org/static/ccw.html
(I recognized the logo from one of the assclown's hats) Virginia Citizens Defense League (or Assclowns) They are the same ones from Fairfax I was mentioning, and it looks like they like to post up a boycott list of all the places that kick them out: http:www.vcdl.org/static/gue.html
This is just what I pulled right from the code, and I did not bother to look up any case law to is, because I just cannot imagine any bar owner that wouldn't want assclowns with guns kicked out. Sorry for being so long-winded."
From the way the emails are presented in that document, it appears that the quote above was written by either Officer Clodfelter or Officer Pannell. It is rather dismaying to note, however, that there is not a single word anywhere in any subsequent communication taking issue with a sworn officer referring to law abiding citizens as "assclowns" by any of the recipients of that missive. Even though the email was deemed offensive and blocked by the city's "banned content" filter.
As I said before, I am not writing to rant about the right to bear arms. That is not truly at issue here - as Officer Clodfelter's prior email and the car-to-car messages not, what the 6 citizens in the restaurant were doing was completely legal.
What is, in my opinion, a VERY serious issue is the utter contempt being displayed by numerous city employees (as least two of whom are sworn law enforcement officers) toward both the citizens of the Commonwealth and the law. It truly makes one wonder - what kind of service can an "assclown" expect when they need help from these officers?
The mission statement of the Manassas City Police Department states that the Department "commits its resources in partnership with the community, to; promote public safety and maintain public order by eliminating crime and the fear of crime; practice the values of integrity, respect, public service and professional standing; and to maintain a proactive relationship with the community, and a positive working environment for Department members."
Judging by the correspondence in question, it appears that the values of integrity, respect, public service and professional standing don't apply to certain citizens, i.e. the "assclown" population.
I would be hard pressed to recommend a visit to your city for business or social purposes if this sort of conduct is tolerated among city employees. I would hope that the city takes immediate, visible steps to ensure that this sort of conduct does not occur in the future.
If the Department is truly committed to integrity and respect, a public apology from the officer who wrote the email in question to the "assclowns" would be warranted, along with some remedial training.