Susan Manheimer Interim Chief Covers For Oakland Police Officer Wearing Boogaloo Boys Hawaiian Shirt
Two days ago, I wrote the following account:
Do Oakland Police Have Racist Boogaloo Boys As Cops? Some Think So After This Officer Photo
The Boogaloo Boys are a group described as in Refinery 29 as “mostly white, heavily armed men who claim they have a “libertarian” bent, and have shown up to protests against police violence in recent weeks armed to the teeth and looking to start a race war.” One man, Air Force Sgt. Steven Carrillo, was charged in the shooting of Dave Patrick Underwood, a federal officer in Oakland during a George Floyd protest.
They are also known for wearing Hawaiian shirts.
This vlog is based on a Facebook post made 9 hours ago. It reads (by one resident) “If you are not familiar with the Boogaloo Bois, you should be. They are one of the scarier far right militia/racist types. Wearing Hawaiian type shirts is their thing. Here, we see one of them in the Oakland police department.”
The person who took and posted the video wrote “I’m watching a team of at least 15 OPD serve a warrant on a black family with small child in West Oakland right now, with assault rifles out.
One of the cops is wearing a Hawaiian shirt under his plate carrier. I called out “hey Boogaloo boy! Since when does OPD dress like Nazis?” They know what it is. (It’s all over now, cops have left)”
I am in the process of reaching out to the Oakland Police, and to Oakland elected officials, for answers to this.
After posting the content, I sent it to the Mayor of Oakland, the Oakland Police Media, and several Oakland City Councilmembers. The Oakland Police Public Information Officer said she would follow-up with me on the matter. I am still waiting.
Meanwhile, this happened…
On Facebook, an Oaklander posted an email from Susan Manheimer, the Oakland Interim Police Chief. It’s words, as you can see, were shocking. Rather than say she was investigating the matter, and leaving it at that, Manheimer bypassed OPD Media, and wrote that there was no connection between Hawaiian shirts and any extremist group. That, even though she admitted reading my blog post.
Why the Interim Police Chief would risk being seen as defending an officer who might be a member of the racist Boogaloo Boys is alarming, and could lead to her fast ouster. I think it should, personally.
There is only one answer here, and it’s not a good one. The Oakland Police Commission and Mayor of Oakland must step in. And we know where that can lead.
This is the email Manheimer wrote:
Thank you for your email inquiry questioning whether an officer wearing a Hawaiian shirt is an extremist who should be investigated.
While Hawaiian shirts or palm trees may be worn by members of different groups they’re also worn and sold universally – in fact there was a big sale today at Macy’s as I was shopping and saw many diverse individuals purchasing and wearing the Hawaiian
attire made famous by Tommy Bahama – including my dress today that I just noticed had a Hawaiian palm tree pattern – although it could be a Floridian shirt as I purchased it in Key West on a recent trip.
I can assure you that Hawaiian attire or the palm tree insignia is no more significant of alignment of a certain extremist group than it is of appreciating colorful attire, having a license plate from certain states, or even visiting Hawaii where you will
find thousands of vacationers sporting them.
Here is the picture I took of the sale at Macy’s today after seeing that blog post suggesting that somehow wearing Hawaiian shirts are now an extremist indicator.
I should have photographed the cashier line in which I saw many racially diverse individuals waiting to purchase these shirts. I just thought it would be intrusive.
I will copy this email myself to our Police Commission so that they can be aware of this issue and that there is universal appeal of Hawaiian attire and it has not been colored by one specifically
aligned extremist group.
Yours In Service,
Susan E. Manheimer
Interim Chief of Police
Oakland Police Department
Office of Chief of Police
455 7th Street
Oakland, CA. 94607
Stay tuned, folks!
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