Embattled State Police Nominee Gets Racist Letter
Gov. Tom Wolf’s embattled pick to lead the Pennsylvania State Police received a “racially charged” letter this week.
The handwritten loose-leaf letter saying “No [racial epithet] lover will wear my uniform” was placed overnight Monday in Marcus Brown’s mailbox outside his home in Hampden Township, Cumberland County, according to a state police spokeswoman. Brown turned the letter over to Hampden police and the Cumberland County district attorney’s office, she said.
The letter appears to reference statements Brown made when he was Maryland State Police superintendent after the Ferguson, Mo., riots involving a police shooting last summer. During a discussion with other Maryland police officials, Brown was quoted in the media as saying sometimes police tactics can escalate civic unrest.
Brown, who is white, was cited for his commitment to diversity when Governor Wolf nominated him for the state police post. Numerous retired troopers have been critical of Brown however for wearing a state police uniform even though he never attended the State Police Academy.
The “Didn’t-Don’t” signature on the letter is an apparent reference to a slogan popular with Brown’s critics which is, “If you didn’t graduate from the State Police Academy, you don’t wear the State Police uniform.
News of the letter broke the same day Pa. Senate Majority Leader Jake Corman held out the possibility that Brown’s nomination to head the state police will be rejected. PennLive:
“I don’t think he has the support to get through the Senate,” Corman said of the nomination, which needs a simple majority of the 50-member chamber for confirmation. “My philosophy of appointments is to try to be deferential to the governor. But we do have the constitutional role to make sure he is appropriate [to serve].”