NYPD official in charge of handling workplace harassment accused of decades of racist ranting

NYPD Deputy Inspector James F. Kobel has allegedly been posting racist messages under the name "Clouseau" on a popular NYPD message board for more than 2 decades, according to the New York Times:

Between the summer of 2019 and earlier this fall, "Clouseau" posted hundreds of messages on the Rant, many of which attacked Black people, Puerto Ricans, Hasidic Jews and others with an unbridled sense of animus.

He referred to former President Barack Obama as a "Muslim savage" and called the Bronx district attorney, Darcel D. Clark, who is Black, "a gap-toothed wildebeest."


Inspector Kobel denied the allegations to his superiors, a police official said. But on Thursday, he was relieved of his command of the Equal Employment Opportunity Division and placed on modified assignment pending completion of the department inquiry.

As Deputy Inspector, Kobel's responsibilities included overseeing the office responsible "for the prevention and investigation of employment and harassment claims" within the New York Police Department.

An investigation into the matter, which began 3 weeks ago, is still ongoing. Kobel has reportedly cooperated with the Internal Affairs inquiry thus far, and many of his colleagues have of course insisted that he was "quiet, low-key and strait-laced," which presumably implies that he is also innocent.

N.Y.P.D. Anti-Harassment Official Accused of Racist Rants [William K. Rashbaum and Alan Feuer / New York Times]

Image: Nick Allen / Flickr (CC 2.0)