Police Department Tolerating Hate
The San Antonio Park Police were informed of an incident in which one of their sergeants, Sgt. Mike Burns, made degrading, racist joke. Rather than face any real consequences for it, all the park police did was issue a reprimand. The “joke” whose major premise was that Black people are theives and Hispanic people are lazy, didn’t even rate a suspension in the eyes of the park police. Not even with this vile joke coming from one of their sergeants.
Note – This is an example of why we say Sheriff Javier Salazar’s experience as a sergeant with the San Antonio Police Department is worthless. Sergeants, in San Antonio law enforcement, are not held to high standards or to a higher level of accountability due to their position. It’s because the sergeant position is not considered to be a significant one in their agency.
This all sounds bad but it gets worse. Mike Burns was a sergeant with the park police but he took that job AFTER retiring from the San Antonio Police Department where he had been a Deputy Chief. There is no way that no one, in the higher echelons of the San Antonio Police Department, had never heard him make other racist comments. And yet nothing was ever done about it.
The KSAT Defenders haven’t been making any friends with the administrations of the local law enforcement agencies but the regular officers are happy to have them looking into the wrong-doing. Someone was so unhappy with the minimal slap on the wrist that Mr. Burns was getting that they released the information to the Defenders saying they felt the public had the right to know about it.
It’s been four months since KSAT wrote their first article uncovering the racist joke. We have now learned that Mike Burns retired on October 7, 2020. No information has been given as to why he chose to retire but we can only assume that his actions being made public, put enough pressure on everyone that he and administration, felt it was in his best interest to leave. This is why the public needs transparency. You can’t get rid of problem people if all their transgressions are hidden and/or minimall addressed. Hopefully this time, people will have sense enough not to rehire him.