MONROVIA, Liberia (AP) — Liberia's president fired her deputy security chief after social media erupted in outrage over allegations that he and his men beat a woman and stabbed her with a glass bottle.
Darlington George, the deputy director of operations for the presidential security team, has been fired and the justice ministry has been advised to investigate the case for possible prosecution, President Ellen Johnson Sirleaf's office announced in a statement.
Sirleaf's office "will not condone such acts of sheer indiscipline and total lack of morals on the part of any member of state security institutions," said the statement issued late Monday night.
George told The Associated Press on Tuesday that he could not comment on the allegations "until I am given the green light to do so."
Grisly photos purporting to show the woman's bloodied face and body spread quickly on Facebook and other social media outlets after George allegedly assaulted her on Sunday in the parking lot of a soccer field in Monrovia.
The woman, Esther Glain, said she and George got into a dispute after George nearly struck her with his SUV, according to the local FrontPageAfrica newspaper. After calling her a prostitute, he and his men beat her and stabbed her in the head and jaw with a soda bottle, she said in an interview in the newspaper.
Glain praised Sirleaf's decision to sack George, saying she hoped it would "set a precedent for others who are involved in gender-based violence."
The case had also reportedly drawn the attention of Leymah Gbowee, who along with Sirleaf won the Nobel Peace Prize in 2011 for their promotion of women's rights.
Liberia's security forces became notorious for human rights abuses and corruption during more than a decade of civil conflict that ended in 2003.