A Massachusetts police officer mocked the counter-demonstrators who were mowed down during a white supremacist rally in Charlottesville, Virginia on Saturday.
"Hahahaha love this, maybe people shouldn't block roads," Springfield Officer Conrad Lariviere wrote in a Facebook comment on a news article about the incident.
Springfield Police Commissioner John Barbieri said the department has launched an investigation into the officer’s comments, according to ABC News.
"I received notification of this Facebook post earlier today via email from a complainant. The post is purportedly from Springfield police officer. I took immediate steps to initiate a prompt and thorough internal investigation," Barbieri wrote in an email. "If in fact this post did originate from an officer employed with the Springfield Police Department, this matter will be reviewed by the Community Police Hearings Board for further action."
Heather Heyer, a 32-year-old paralegal, was killed in the crash. Nineteen people were injured.
The driver, James Alex Fields Jr., 20, of Ohio, has been arrested. He was photographed at the rally carrying a Vanguard America shield, a white supremacist organization that calls itself "the face of American fascism."
Lariviere told one commenter who criticized his Facebook comment,"I've been hit by a s------ with warrants but who cares right you ignorant brat live in a fantasy land with the rest of America while I deal with the real danger.”
Springfield, Massachusetts Mayor Domenic Sarno released a statement condemning Lariviere's comments.
"I just got done issuing a statement this morning on how upsetting the tragic incidents were in Charlottesville, Virginia and one of our own officers does this? Unbelievable! There is no place for this in our society, let alone from a Springfield Police Officer," Sarno said. "I stand by and commend Commissioner John Barbieri's steps for a thorough internal investigation and review by our Community Police Hearing Board to pursue the appropriate discipline against said officer."
Lariviere told MassLive.com that he made a “stupid comment about people blocking streets."
"Never would I want someone to get murdered. I am not a racist and don't believe in what any of those protesters are doing," Lariviere told MassLive.com. "I'm a good man who made a stupid comment and would just like to be left alone."
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