KANSAS CITY, Mo. (AP) — A police department announced Thursday that a patrolman no longer works for a northwest Missouri city after appearing in a racially charged music video wearing his uniform and carrying a "cops lives matter" sign.
St. Joseph police spokesman Capt. Jeff Wilson offered no details about whether Zackary Craft was fired or resigned. Wilson, in an email, directed questions to the city attorney's office. City attorney Bryan Carter said the city cannot comment on personnel matters.
Wilson said earlier that Craft had been placed on unpaid leave pending a due-process hearing and that the department didn't condone the video called "Before This Bomb Blows Up (Racism Goes Both Ways)" by Josh Smith, a white rapper from the Kansas City suburb of Independence who performs as J.Smitty. The sign is a reference to the Black Lives Matter movement that has focused attention on the killing of blacks by police.
Craft's attorney, Morgan Roach, didn't immediately return a phone message or email seeking comment. He said earlier that Craft allowed himself to be filmed "without knowing the words, content, or context" and was "appalled" when he saw the video.
The video shows Smith rapping about how "racism goes both ways" as he spits on a picture of the Rev. Al Sharpton and breaks pictures of the Rev. Jesse Jackson, President Barack Obama and hooded Ku Klux Klan members. Craft also is seen holding handwritten placards reading "right is right" and "wrong is wrong."
Smith has said that Craft, whom he described as a friend, knew the video was "supposed to make cops look good" but didn't know "quite how far it was going to go."