Peoria officer's demotion over Obama photo upheld, suspension reduced

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By Jennifer Thomas By Jennifer Thomas

PEORIA, Ariz. -- A Peoria police officer who posted a bullet-ridden image of President Obama on Facebook will not get his old job back.

Patrick Shearer was demoted from sergeant and suspended earlier this year after posting an image of seven teenagers with some holding guns and one holding what appeared to be a shot-up Obama T-shirt.

"The Peoria Police Department's Code of Conduct states, 'all employees shall conduct themselves in a manner that shall never bring discredit or embarrassment to the City of Peoria or the Peoria Police Department,'" Chief Roy Minter Jr. said after the incident. "We expect our employees to exercise sound judgment and not bring discredit upon our Police Department."

Shearer appealed the punishment.

On Monday, he went before the City Council, which upheld the demotion but reduced his suspension from 80 hours to 40 hours.

"I'm happy with the decision that was made today," Shearer said. "The investigation by our Internal Affairs I think was fantastic and I just want to continue to serve the people and do the best that I can and I'm sorry if anything I said or did offended anybody."


Shearer has worked for the Peoria Police Department for 14 years.