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Video: Montgomery County Police Officer Call Black Men Racist Slur; Probe Underway

SILVER SPRING, Md. (AP/WJZ) -- A Maryland police officer was recorded using a racist slur to refer to several detained black men.

News outlets report Montgomery County police are investigating the Thursday incident, which was livestreamed on Instagram by one of the men.

Police were called to a Silver Spring McDonald's on Thursday morning for a report of trespassing. Responding officers questioned the black men and searched their belongings. The department released body camera video Thursday.

One man calls the officers the slur, and a blond white officer uses the slur to refer back to the men. The man says the woman probably wouldn't use the slur if she wasn't wearing her badge. The officer says she's just repeating the man's words. Acting police Chief Russ Hamill says mimicking another person's language is no excuse.

County police released a statement about the incident on Thursday:

"The Montgomery County Department of Police takes all allegations of racial discrimination seriously.  We are committed to serving all members of the community in a fair, impartial, and non-discriminatory manner at all times.  All allegations of misconduct surrounding inappropriate actions or language by our employees are investigated by our Internal Affairs Division, at times in concert with other governmental agencies within Montgomery County.

The matter brought to our attention today is disturbing and contrary to our department's values and our overarching mission to fairly and impartially serve our community.  The statements observed on the social media video clip are contrary to our extensive training curriculum that include implicit bias training and other training programs to ensure fair, unbiased, and non-discriminatory policing in our community.

We sincerely regret the disturbing nature of this video.  We understand the pain such language causes the entire community.  Our commitment to having open and honest communication with the community and providing transparent police service persists. As part of our commitment to accountability and transparency, we are releasing both the social media video and the body worn camera footage of the involved officer for all to view.

The referenced videos were captured during an interaction between officers and four individuals at the McDonalds located at 11146 New Hampshire Avenue, in Silver Spring, on today's date at 10:36 a.m.  The officers were investigating trespassers at that location."

To watch the video, click on these links. These are unedited and NSFW. Graphic language is heard in the video.

Instagram video | Body cam video

(© Copyright 2019 The Associated Press. All Rights Reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.)

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