Acting Philly PD Commissioner Slammed For Wearing 'Offensive' T-Shirt In 1990s

Acting Philadelphia Police Commissioner Christine Coulter is in trouble for a picture of her wearing an offensive shirt.

Philadelphia, PA – Just a few weeks after she replaced former Philadelphia Police Commissioner Richard Ross, Acting Police Commissioner Christine Coulter is in trouble for a racially-insensitive t-shirt she was photographed wearing more than 25 years ago.

Commissioner Coulter apologized Tuesday for having worn a shirt in the 1990s that said “L.A.P.D. We Treat You Like a King,” WPVI reported.

The message was allegedly a reference to Los Angeles Police Department (LAPD) officers’ now infamous beating of Rodney King.

Commissioner Coulter told the Philadelphia City Council that she was “profoundly sorry” for having worn the shirt, WPVI reported.

"I sincerely hope that a careless decision that I made over 25 years ago doesn't overshadow the work that I've done,” the commissioner told the council. “I am profoundly sorry for the pain that the shirt and the picture has caused, not to me, but to the city and the communities that we serve.”

She was photographed wearing the shirt circa 1994 while with a group of officers from the 25th District at the Jersey Shore, the Philadelphia Inquirer reported.

Commissioner Coulter claimed she didn’t know what the shirt meant at the time she wore it but apologized for her “careless decision”

The commissioner said she “never even thought of it as anything other than an L.A.P.D. shirt,” and didn’t recognize the reference to the King beating at the time.

Her apology and following remarks were made during a city council meeting that was supposed to be about the problem with insensitive and offensive Facebook messages posted by 330 Philadelphia police officers, the Philadelphia Inquirer reported.

Philadelphia City Councilwoman Cindy Bass told those assembled for the meeting that she had sent a letter to Mayor Jim Kenney asking him to tell Commissioner Coulter to “step down immediately” in the wake of the t-shirt photo revelation.

“It is inconceivable that she was unaware” of what the shirt meant, Bass said.

Her comments were drowned out by wild sustained applause from the gallery, the Philadelphia Inquirer reported.

The mayor, however, stood behind his newly-appointed acting police commissioner in a statement released later on Tuesday.

Kenney said that “a bad decision” 25 years ago wasn’t going to void her decades of good service to the city, the Philadelphia Inquirer reported.

The mayor said in his statement that the t-shirt “was abhorrent, wearing it was a mistake, and she took responsibility.”

Still, a number of people in attendance continued to call for the acting commissioner’s resignation even after her apology.

"If she truly wanted to make amends and was truly apologetic for what she said, she should have resigned, and then she should have apologized," Philadelphia resident Asa Khalif told WPVI.

The Philadelphia Police Department has been in a state of upheaval for months since the Plain View Project identified 328 Philadelphia police officers and officials who had posted “offensive” content on Facebook, kicking off a massive investigation.

In June, then-Commissioner Ross placed 72 officers and officials on administrative leave while the department hired an outside law firm to review the social media posts identified as problematic by the department.

The commissioner fired 13 officers in July and announced that another 56 of the 72 who were investigated would face discipline ranging from a reprimand to a 30-day unpaid suspension.

In August, Commissioner Ross submitted his resignation after two female officers filed a lawsuit against the Philadelphia police that alleged he ignored racial discrimination and harassment complaints from subordinates, including a woman with whom he had an affair for two years.

“New allegations of sexual harassment as well as gender and racial discrimination among the rank and file have recently been brought to my attention. While those allegations do not accuse Commissioner Ross of harassment, I do ultimately believe his resignation is in the best interest of the Department,” the mayor said in a statement at the time.

Comments (60)
No. 1-36
tuggingalong
tuggingalong

“Oh Social Media Messiah, I was unaware of your gracious return. Please forgive all of our sins from our past.”

I suppose every black entertainer that uses the “N” word should be castrated and Martin Luther King opposed gay marriage so we need to rename all of those streets and blvds named after him.

Yes, that’s ridiculous rhetoric as is crucifying this lady for wearing a tee shirt 25 years ago.

We live in good times if one of the worse offenses is offending someone.

Watcher 1
Watcher 1

Have they checked the shirts in the hood?

AnnykaV
AnnykaV

Well Cindy Bass, what can we dig up on you and try to torpedo your career? Good grief, people.

Just-My-Thoughts
Just-My-Thoughts

What someone said or did (unless criminal) was "back then", so so many years ago. Haven't we all changed our minds "after" with life experiences in 25 years? I don't think people should be allowed to produce something people did or said in their teens, 20's, etc when they weren't "cooked yet". Think back as to what you said/did.

Dutchuncle
Dutchuncle

And yet, Obama can be elected President KNOWING that he was raised, mentored and Introduced into politics by Admitted COMMUNISTS!!!! Guess if you are of a certain group, you get a BIG TIME PASS for everything you EVER DID. huh

WatchYourSix
WatchYourSix

Where do people dig stuff like this up? And who has the time and energy to do it? And +1 to what @Watcher 1 said...I've seen some pretty offensive shirts in the hood, as recently as last week. So who decides who gets a pass and who doesn't?!

IseeWhereThisIsGoing
IseeWhereThisIsGoing

it was a t shirt from 25 years ago!!! If that's the worst thing she did over the past 25 years than she is ideal to lead Philly PD

Effiemyers
Effiemyers

Can ANYONE truly say that they have NEVER done something, said something, worn something etc that later in life they WISH THEY HAD NOT DONE! And most of us never get beaten over the head with it! LET IT GO PEOPLE IT WAS 29 YEARS AGO! SOME OF YOU WEREN'T EVEN BORN YET!

Jim H. - Virginia US
Jim H. - Virginia US

Here she is...

And here is the current governor of Virginia...

Double standards for insider Democrats perhaps?

Riverrat34653
Riverrat34653

So we are supposed to forgive convicted felons and not hold past crimes against them, but wearing an offensive t-shirt 25 years ago is unforgivable?

flybynight
flybynight

Well at least she was slightly better looking then........ I said slightly.

61mouse
61mouse

Why is she apologizing ? That was 25 yrs ago

Excalibr4
Excalibr4

I'm old enough to remember the riots and if she was with the police after all that, wearing the shirt, she was very much in the wrong. "Commissioner Coulter claimed she didn’t know what the shirt meant at the time she wore it but apologized for her “careless decision”. That's utter nonsense. I was living in Orlando during the riots and here we are 29 years later and I knew exactly what it meant, the second I saw it and so did she 4 years later. I could forgive the the joke, assuming she was in New Jersey and slamming the LAPD, but to say she didn't know what it meant back then, is a lie and that I don't forgive.

oldbat
oldbat

who really gives a shit what she wore 25 years ago. let by gones be by gones.

cops-kid
cops-kid

Come on that shirts funny

tfort
tfort

Showing her true colors.

Stanracer
Stanracer

Some people are just way to sensitive these days.

Buffrat
Buffrat

I have a T-Shirt she can have. It says, LAPD, dealing with the same community for the past 125 years and nothing's changed.

Vodkabreakfast
Vodkabreakfast

Don’t grovel when the rabble come for their pound of flesh. It looks weak and guilty. Lord forgive me; I’ll use Obama as an example, who shooed away cocaine use back in the day with frank admission - and sailed away on it easily. Give me a moment and I’ll find you a skeleton in anyone’s cupboard.....ANYONE. Everyone calm down and look in the mirror.

Milocd
Milocd

I cannot see how this even matters. For one it’s was 25 years ago. Two she was in the western part of the USA twenty five years ago. Three she’s been working in Philadelphia One the eastern part of the USA. She has apologized for her actions. If she’s good enough to be acting commissioner of Philadelphia. Than let her do her job! And kudos to the mayor for refusing to to let her go.

RevVan
RevVan

Get over it people, it was a joke. Those t shirts were being sold in a lot of places. It was more against LAPD than it was a racial slur. God these people today kiss me off, I'm glad I retired in 2012. and these people who did or said something 25+ years ago need to grow a set and stand up for themselves. If they ever saw some of the shirts I have worn and still wear, they would probably have a stroke. the thing that people just don't get is that our profession as well as several others, cause us to have an acerbic sense of humor. And if a t shirt offends you, it is you that have a problem, not gfe person wearing it.

4thaBlue
4thaBlue

I don’t know what’s funnier, the shirt or her mustache. But I’ll have you know I laughed at both!!!! Let her go, it was so long ago.

Jeffreyp
Jeffreyp

This s*** must end. We cannot continue to apologize for stuff we did years ago, even one year ago. And apologizing for things our ancestors did, sometimes stuff we didn't even know about.

As long as we continue to bow at the foot of the leftists this crap will continue. It has to end. NOW

BD54
BD54

I immediately got the reference to the Rodney King incident and took it as a slam on LAPD. Why would anyone BUT LAPD consider it offensive?

Bulldog
Bulldog

Good God almighty, it's a t-shirt with a stupid saying! GTF OVER IT!!!!! This shit all going back into a person's past just looking for something to cause them embarrassment is totally ridiculous! I'm pretty sure there isn't a person on this website that hasn't done something in their past that would be an embarrassment. This shit has got to stop. People change over the years and usually it's for the better so quit looking for stupid stuff and quit blaming people for things they did when they were young and dumb

magnumforc
magnumforc

They just want yet another person of color in her place. Funny how they don't criticize them for what they did in the past...or yesterday!

Woobie46
Woobie46

Wouldn't ANY tshirt be offensive on this BIG Babe ??

Woobie46
Woobie46

I guess I shoulda read the thing first...I just saw her pic and thought...T SHIRT???? Are you kidding me right now????

gdmn2find8
gdmn2find8

Hmm, where can i get one of those shirts?

Spectre318
Spectre318

The pussification of America...

Budman2082
Budman2082

Is that a mustache on her face?

xxcloroxx
xxcloroxx

Stop apologizing. You give these people power by even acknowledging their issue, so stop apologizing. Tell them to Kiss your ass!

Wish505
Wish505

Give me a break, where do there slimeballs live that keep coming up with this petty crap.

Patriot1midwestern
Patriot1midwestern

Next thing is they will be able to plug you into a machine and trace back all of your thoughts and bust you for that too.....

MajScallywag
MajScallywag

Philadelphia doesn’t deserve a police department. They should instead deal with the anarchy. That way they won’t have to concern themselves with social media posts. Assholes!

tfort
tfort

Is that Captain Kangaroo?