JONESBORO, Ark. – The officer behind the social media post which claimed 80-percent of rape claims were false will be suspended without pay for a month and will receive additional training, a press release from JPD said.
The release begins by saying on Friday, September 28, 2018, a complaint was made with the office of the Chief of Police that Officer John Shipman had made a post that was insensitive on “his personal Facebook page” concerning current media coverage of a national news event. While Shipman did post the content from his personal profile, it was posted to NEA Report Insiders, a news discussion group on Facebook.
An internal affairs investigation that was ordered to investigate these allegations determined Officer John Shipman violated:
• City of Jonesboro Handbook on Social Media.
• Police department policy 328, concerning Social Media.
Officer Shipman has been suspended for 30 days without pay effective this date.
In addition, the investigation looked at the sexual assault reports that officer Shipman had taken in the past 10 years. The total was five. Four were reported rapes, and the fifth was a report on warrant service on a sexual assault charge. The four cases were initial reports and were turned over to the detective division for further investigation.
“Law enforcement employees bear the responsibility of maintaining their own conduct and the integrity of the government entity they represent,” Jonesboro Police Chief Rick Elliott said. “They are expected to conduct themselves in a manner that does not bring discredit upon them.”
“I expect the officers of this department to maintain the highest standard of integrity by working diligently to maintain the community’s trust. Employees must recognize that they are held to a higher standard than the private citizen. In addition to representing the department, they also represent the law enforcement profession.”
“Conduct, on and off duty, must be beyond reproach and meet the highest degree of professionalism and personal accountability. Employees of the Police Department are to respect the rights of individuals and not engage in or tolerate discrimination, oppression or favoritism.”
“Officer Shipman’s comments compromised the integrity of the department and the public’s confidence and trust.”
In addition to his suspension, Shipman will receive further training in dealing with victims of sexual assault.