SPPD: Photo shows K-9 officer dressed as Muslim woman - New York News

St. Paul police confirm photo shows officer mimicking Muslim woman's attire

ST. PAUL, Minn. (AP) -

The St. Paul Police Department has confirmed one of its officers was photographed while dressed as a female Muslim Target employee after the image began to make the rounds on social media sites.

Spokesman Howie Padilla said the officer is a member of the K-9 unit, but police did not release his name. 

The investigation began after the department's Twitter account received a tweet on Sunday asking if the person in the photo is one of its officers after it began to make the rounds on social media sites.

The tweet came from Mukhtar Ibrahim, who identifies himself as a journalist and editor in the Washington, D.C. area. Ibrahim received a reply from the police Twitter account Monday thanking him for bringing the photo to the department's attention and saying, "We take this seriously."

Padilla added that Police Chief Tom Smith launched an internal investigation as soon as he became aware of the image.

"After an image was brought to my attention this morning, I ordered an immediate investigation to determine all of the facts surrounding it," Smith said in a written statement on Monday evening. "The Saint Paul Police Department has worked hard to establish a strong and respectful relationship with our Muslim communities, and I will not allow these types of images to erode that relationship. Diversity is one of the greatest strengths of the City of Saint Paul, and we expect each one of our officers to respect and take pride in serving each of our diverse communities."

The investigation remains ongoing.

The Minnesota chapter of the Council on American-Islamic Relations recommended the department order the officer to participate in diversity training.

After learning of the photo, Target announced it is also conducting a full investigation and will partner with the St. Paul Police Department while they continue to investigate on their own as well.

"As a company who stands firmly for inclusivity and diversity, we were appalled by this photo and do not tolerate or condone discrimination or harassment of any sort," a Target spokeswoman told FOX 9 by phone.

Target also released a statement confirming that the officer pictured had spent time at a local Target store in a security capacity. Their full statement regarding that relationship can be read below:

"Target is committed to ensuring a safe and secure shopping and working environment for our guests and team members. As part of this commitment, Target uses off-duty police officers as part of a multi-layered security focus. While Target does not directly hire those individuals who periodically provide support, we can confirm that the individual in this photo did occasionally provide off-duty support at a local Target store."


The Associated Press contributed to this report.

Join our Facebook family

  • Local NewsLocal NewsMore>>

  • Camilla's brother dies in New York after head injury

    Camilla's brother dies in New York after head injury

    Wednesday, April 23 2014 11:04 PM EDT2014-04-24 03:04:50 GMT
    The brother-in-law of the Prince of Wales died Wednesday after falling outside a hotel bar and suffering a head injury, police said. Mark Shand, the brother of Prince Charles' wife, Camilla, Duchess of Cornwall, was in New York for a charity auction at Sotheby's.
    The brother-in-law of the Prince of Wales died Wednesday after falling outside a hotel bar and suffering a head injury, police said. Mark Shand, the brother of Prince Charles' wife, Camilla, Duchess of Cornwall, was in New York for a charity auction at Sotheby's.
  • Deep split in Port Authority over unfinished WTC tower

    Deep split in Port Authority over unfinished WTC tower

    Wednesday, April 23 2014 9:03 PM EDT2014-04-24 01:03:40 GMT
    Board members of the Port Authority of New York and New Jersey revealed a deep split Wednesday over the agency's role in effecting the completion of the long-delayed 3 World Trade Center project, with some commissioners lauding the effort and others expressing grave concerns. The discussion at the monthly board meeting offered a rare glimpse into the negotiations that have been going on behind the scenes in recent months.
    Board members of the Port Authority of New York and New Jersey revealed a deep split Wednesday over the agency's role in effecting the completion of the long-delayed 3 World Trade Center project, with some commissioners lauding the effort and others expressing grave concerns. The discussion at the monthly board meeting offered a rare glimpse into the negotiations that have been going on behind the scenes in recent months.
  • God's Love We Deliver virtual bake sale for birthday cakes

    God's Love We Deliver virtual bake sale for birthday cakes

    Wednesday, April 23 2014 6:36 PM EDT2014-04-23 22:36:46 GMT
    God's Love We Deliver provides meals to people in the New York City area who are too sick to shop and cook for themselves. Clients also receive birthday cards that are decorated by local school students. Sometimes a cake is the only birthday gift that God's Love's clients will receive.
    God's Love We Deliver provides meals to people in the New York City area who are too sick to shop and cook for themselves. Clients also receive birthday cards that are decorated by local school students. Sometimes a cake is the only birthday gift that God's Love's clients will receive.
Powered by WorldNow
Didn't find what you were looking for?
All content © Copyright 2000 - 2014 Fox Television Stations, Inc. and Worldnow. All Rights Reserved.
Privacy Policy | Terms of Service | Ad Choices