MARBLEHEAD, Mass. — A police officer in Massachusetts who allegedly scratched a swastika into the paint of another officer’s personal vehicle resigned Wednesday following an internal investigation into the incident.
Officer Timothy Tufts, who joined the Marblehead Police Department in March 2016, resigned from the agency Wednesday following the results of an Internal Affairs investigation, Chief Robert Picariello said in a statement.
“I am dismayed and deeply disturbed by this incident,” Picariello said Wednesday. “Today, there is no room for excuses of ignorance. The swastika is a symbol of hate and genocide, and we must speak up against acts of hate and hate speech whenever and wherever we encounter it. I apologize to our community for this deeply disturbing and unfortunate situation, and I vow to do everything and engage every resource available to ensure that this kind of incident does not repeat itself in the future.”
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Although the department became aware of the vandalism in mid-November, it was unclear when the act occurred, Fox News reported.
Upon learning of the matter, Picariello said he immediately began to gather the facts of the incident, and Tufts was placed on administrative leave pending an investigation, which is “consistent with the policies and procedures of the department.”
The chief’s press statement did not indicate whether Tufts’ admitted or denied committing the act. He simply said the officer “resigned from the Marblehead Police Department as a result of this incident.”