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Richmond Cop's Controversial Tweet Draws Online Backlash

RICHMOND (CBS 5) - A Sergeant in the Richmond Police Department is facing criticism for a tweet directed at the president of the Ultimate Fighting Championship that critics claim supports gun violence.

"We were made aware of post on Twitter by one of our police sergeants that was controversial," confirmed Richmond police Lt. Bisa French.

The UFC website had been defaced by the hacker group Anonymous. In response, the following post was made on Sgt. Mike Rood's Twitter account:

"Get those hacking (expletives). I'm a cop in the Bay Area. I would go at them with both guns," read the tweet from Rood's account.

There's been a lot of traffic on Facebook and Twitter regarding the comments.

The tweet went viral, drawing complaints from around the country towards Richmond PD Facebook Page.

Critics want the officer to face criminal charges for making a threat, but a legal expert who spoke to CBS 5 said that's unlikely. California penal code punishes "any person who willfully threatens to commit a crime," but only if that threat is deemed immediate and specific.

The officer's Twitter page has been deleted and Richmond PD's Facebook page is now locked.

Lt. French said Rood's tweet will be judged against the department's code of conduct. And though there is no social networking policy, one is currently in the works.

(Copyright 2012 by CBS San Francisco. All Rights Reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten, or redistributed.)

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