US police boss suspended after video shows him throwing away Jewish book
search

The latest Jewish News

Read this week’s digital edition

Click Here

US police boss suspended after video shows him throwing away Jewish book

Sgt. Roberto Destephan seen on video throwing wooden book engraved with Star of David and a copy of the Tanach the back of a truck

A Miami police sergeant was suspended after a video was broadcast showing him throwing a wooden box engraved with a Star of David and a copy of the Tanach in the back of a pickup truck calling them crap.

“Taking out the trash, dawg,” Sgt. Roberto Destephan, a 13-year veteran of the force, says on the video after turning the camera on his face. Destephan also serves as the vice president of the Miami Fraternal Order of Police.

The video was first aired by WPLG Local 10.

“The actions of this employee were found to be inconsistent with the mission and values of our department,” Chief Jorge R. Colina said in a statement. “I would like to reassure our citizens of all faiths that we stand in solidarity with them.”

“When you look at the video, what it appears is to be anti-Semitic speech and a desecration of the Torah,” Colina also said.

The department has opened an internal affairs investigation into the video.

The Miami Fraternal Order of Police said in a statement that that the video was “heavily edited,” and called it a form of “political blackmail.” Destephan recently received an email threatening to make the video public unless he did not run for reelection and stepped down from his FOP position.

The statement said that the video was taken “years ago” when the FOP union office was “full of mould and termites.” Items in the office were “discarded for health reasons.” The statement added that “the video that has been released has been edited and doesn’t capture the full and entire conversation.”

Help perform the greatest mitzvah: save a life

While life in Israel has returned to normal and hopes are high that Britain is set for a summer without restrictions thanks to vaccines, for billions around the world there is no such imminent light at the end of the tunnel. In the majority of countries around the globe, particularly the poorest, the vaccine rollout has barely kicked off.

That's why Jewish News, the leading source of news and opinion for the entire UK community, is throwing its full weight behind UNICEF’s VaccinAid campaign by using this platform usually reserved for encouraging donations towards our own journalism to instead urge our readers around the globe to perform the greatest mitzvah: saving a life.

We have never before done this for any charity fundraiser but it's hard to recall a campaign that affects so many people, and indeed an entire planet aching for a return to normality. Just like the Chief Rabbi and Rachel Riley, we hope to boost the mission to deliver two billion vaccines, 165 million treatments and 900 million test kits around the world by the end of this year.

Please donate as much as you can, in the spirit of the Talmudic sages: “to save one life is to save the world entire”

read more:
comments