Nelsonville Police Officer Resigns Over ‘Insensitive’ Facebook Post

NELSONVILLE, OH — A recently hired Nelsonville police officer resigned Friday over a post the officer made on social media.

Nelsonville Police Chief Scott Fitch announced the officer’s resignation in a post on his department’s Facebook page Friday night. Fitch did not name the officer.

Fitch wrote that earlier in the evening an “insensitive” Facebook post made by the officer was brought to his attention. He consulted with Nelsonville City Manager Scott Frank, and the two decided it was in the city’s best interest to ask for the officer’s resignation.

“The Facebook post does not represent the views or values of the Nelsonville Police Department or the City of Nelsonville,” Fitch wrote. “We are working hard to give the residents of Nelsonville a police department that upholds the standards of the community and equally represents everyone. We would like to apologize to anyone that was negatively affected by this incident. In moving forward, we want everyone to know that the Nelsonville Police Department will not tolerate insensitive behavior by any of its employees.”

Fitch’s announcement of the officer’s resignation came a few hours after Athens County Copwatch posted about a new Nelsonville police officer on its Facebook page.

In that 3:50 p.m. post, Copwatch reported that Tracy Varner had been sworn in Friday as a Nelsonville police officer. Included in the post was a screenshot that Copwatch said it made of a post Varner made on her Facebook page.

The post captured by the screenshot says:

Kamala Harris says “the nation has been pierced over Jacob Blake shooting”!….. Only thing I’m aware of being pierced is Jacob Blake with lead. #goodshooting

Varner’s Facebook page is no longer publicly viewable, so WOUB was not able to confirm that she made this post.

WOUB also has not yet been able to confirm that Varner is the officer Fitch is referring to in his post about the resignation, although it seems likely.

From WOUB Public Media