03:54 GMT +321 January 2018
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    Shooting ‘N***ers’: Florida Cops Fired For Texting Racist Jokes, Threats

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    A pair of police officers in the US state of Florida have been relieved of their duties after maliciously stereotyping black people as lazy criminals and chatting about shooting “n***ers” over a series of texts.

    The cops, Matthew Snyder and William Wetherell, resigned in October, but their Florida police department only released details of the investigation on Wednesday, Raw Story reports.

    In the exchange, Snyder quipped alongside a meme, "this just in, no work boots were stolen in the looting," to which Wetherell replied, "because black people don't steal things for work."

    Snyder then explained, "that's how you starve them, [by putting] their paycheck under their work boots." Another text showed a meme of alleged "looters" with a caption, "black looters matter."

    Snyder said in another text message he was forced to sell a rifle because there was "nothing big enough" where he lived "to shoot with it other than blacks." Another unspecified cop apparently thought Snyder was talking about black bears that could be hunted with the rifle before Wetherell remarked, "Ur right. Can't forget about the n***ers."

    In the aftermath of losing their jobs, Snyder claimed he wasn't a racist and was merely joking, while Wetherell said he endured a "lapse in judgement," according to the December 21 Raw Story report.

    According to a lethal force tracker operated by the Washington Post, police officers have shot and killed 952 US citizens since the start of 2017. About 23 percent, or 220 of the deceased, were black. Demographically, black Americans make up 13.3 percent of the US population, Census Bureau data shows — in other words, they represent nearly twice their proportion of the population in deaths at the hands of police.

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