A Georgia sheriff’s deputy faces firing after writing a controversial social media post about the sentencing of the murderers of Black jogger Ahmaud Arbery.
Paul Urhahn was suspended by the Houston County Sheriff’s Office after posting on a TV station’s Facebook page, “That criminal Arbery still got the death penalty though.”
The now-deleted post came after three white men were jailed last week for life for murdering the 25-year-old in the state.
But his employer began an investigation after screenshots of the post were shared with them, after which Deputy Urhahn was suspended without pay pending termination.
“He is suspended pending termination. He had 10 working days from today through the 20th at 5 pm to file for an appeal hearing,” Chief Deputy Bill Rape said, according to local reports.
In a letter to Deputy Urhahn, the chief deputy stated that he violated two sections of conduct: discrediting the department, and conduct that leads to the loss of public respect and confidence.
The agency stated that Deputy Urhahn was previously investigated in 2020 over allegations he was recorded on a doorbell camera making a derogatory term towards a Black woman.
But the sheriff’s office says it could not substantiate the claim and no action was taken against him.
If Deputy Urhahn appeals his ultimate dismissal, a hearing will be held within five days.
Father and son, Gregory and Travis McMichael armed themselves and chased Arbery, along with neighbour William “Roddie” Bryan, in February 202.
They claimed they thought he was a criminal, and after cornering him, Travis McMichael shot and killed the unarmed jogger.
Both McMichaels were convicted of murder and sentenced to life without the possibility of parole, while Bryan received a life sentence with the possibility of parole after 30 years served.