SPD officer to face discipline for handicapped parking violation
SHREVEPORT, LA (KSLA) - A photo of a Shreveport police unit parked in a handicap-designated parking spot a local restaurant is generating some heat on Facebook.
The picture shows Shreveport Police Department unit #741 parked in the shade just outside the door of Superior Grill on Line Avenue, in a clearly-marked handicap spot. Julie Garrett Mills posted it on her Facebook page Tuesday, showing her husband Kenny getting out of a truck in a wheelchair on a lift next to the police unit.
"We're not making any excuses. We get it. We understand what the image looks like," said Cpl. Marcus Hines with the Shreveport Police Department.
KSLA News 12 received numerous copies of the photo from concerned citizens who want to know what action is being taken in response to this apparent violation by an officer sworn to uphold the law.
When asked if SPD condones that kind of thing Hines responded "Not at all. We want to be very clear about this. No one is above the law."
The car is reportedly assigned to a police officer who works security at the restaurant. Hines says the incident will be investigated on an administrative level, then if the findings warrant it, disciplinary action will be taken.
One anonymous viewer wrote in, "This is a disgrace. My husband is in law enforcement and we see this all the time from citizens around town. But for a police officer with his car number on the side, is really showing disrespect for the city of Shreveport and definitely for a true handicapped person. What if there was a handicap person that needed the spot?"
Another message sent with the now-viral photo says, "I believe the officer is completely wrong. What gives them the right of taking a spot from someone who needs but gives out tickets to people who park there. I feel some officers take advantage of their position as an officer."
Shreveport Police Chief Administrative Assistant Bill Goodin would say what that disciplinary action would be taken if the unidentified officer was found to be in violation of the law and department policy, but confirmed that officers in similar situations typically have their units taken away and receive a citation for a parking violation.
An updated photo posted early Wednesday afternoon on Mills' page appears to show the handicap markings in the same spot painted over. The caption: "Now look what's happened!"
Management at Superior Grill has declined to comment.
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