An Ottawa police officer has been charged in connection with one of two racist memes that were being circulated within the Ottawa Police Service.

Ottawa Police Chief Peter Sloly announced that the officer was charged under the Police Services Act in relation to the creation and distribution of the image, which pictured 13 racialized members of the service and the phrase: “Ottawa Police Service – We’re always hiring…anyone.”

He did not confirm if it was the same officer who was suspended earlier this month as part of an investigation into the meme.

Chief Sloly also revealed an administrative investigation is underway into the source of the leaks, saying it “further victimized the people depicted in the meme along with their families and it victimized other OPS members and their families.” He stated, “It further damaged the OPS reputation and it further undermined the trust and confidence that the public has in the OPS.”

As a result, he said they’d be overhauling their policies and their IT practices to prevent this from happening again.

Addressing the killing of George Floyd and ensuing protests, Sloly acknowledged that it is “impacting members of our local Black community,” including himself. 

The OPS chief says the entire organization “failed” and is going through “remediation.” 

Read the full statement HERE.

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