14:49 GMT25 November 2020
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    The Miami Police Department (MPD) in Florida has moved to take disciplinary action against Officer Daniel Ubeda, whose name became a trending topic on social media Tuesday after he was seen wearing a “Trump 2020” mask emblazoned with profanity.

    Ubeda quickly rose to infamy on Twitter after his photo drew accusations of being another example of voter intimidation across the US. “Trump 2020” and “no more bulls**t” were seen written across his face mask, which he chose to wear while working at Government Center’s voting site in Downtown Miami.

    Pursuant to Florida statute 102.031, “no person, political committee, or other group or organization may solicit voters inside the polling place or within 150 feet of the entrance to any polling place, a polling room where the polling place is also a polling room, an early voting site, or an office of the supervisor where vote-by-mail ballots are requested and printed on demand for the convenience of electors who appear in person to request them.”

    “We are aware of the photograph being circulated of a Miami Police officer wearing a political mask in uniform,” tweeted the official MPD account Tuesday morning. “This behavior is unacceptable, a violation of departmental policy, and is being addressed immediately.”

    Deputy Police Chief Ron Papier told the Miami Herald that he spoke with MPD Chief Jorge Colina regarding the matter and that the “appropriate disciplinary action” will be carried out against Ubeda.

    “Obviously this is a clear violation of our department policy regarding campaigning while on duty,” Papier said. “Additionally, the mask has offensive language, which is also a violation of department policy.”

    Miami-Dade Democratic Party chair Steve Simeonidis, an attorney, said that he saw Ubeda “well within” the 150-foot barrier identified by law.

    “He may have been going to vote. But he was in full uniform with the mask and a gun. That’s voter intimidation,” he claimed, also noting that Ubeda “laughed it off” when questioned about his face mask.

    Ubeda’s actions come alongside the MPD’s public push to ensure locals are able to safely cast their votes without on-site intimidation.

    “We’ve received an incredible amount of emails and calls from our residents concerning the security of our election process," said Suarez during a news conference Monday, as reported by NBC Miami. "Some are concerned that they may not be able to vote at all because of harassment that they’ve seen at polling places."

    Miami Mayor Francis Suarez and Colina announced that plainclothes officers would be stationed near polling sites following the increased reports.

    “We don’t have any credible threats right now against any polling site in the city of Miami or Miami-Dade County, however we know that it only takes a moment for some radical fringe group to activate a number of people to go out and commit some act to try to intimidate,” Colina said.

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    Tags:
    MPD, cop, police, US Election 2020, Donald Trump, Florida, Miami Police Department
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