MIAMI (CBSMiami) – A City of Miami police officer faces disciplinary action after sporting a Pro-Trump political mask while early voting on Tuesday.
Miami Police Chief Jorge Colina is calling the actions of the Miami police officer “unacceptable.”
The picture was taken by Steve Simeonidis, chairman of the Miami-Dade Democratic party, inside the early voting polling site in the Stephen P. Clark Government Center in downtown Miami.
Simeonidis’ tweet reads, “Here is @CityofMiami Police Officer Daniel Ubeda, in full uniform with badge and gun wearing his Trump mask inside of the polling location in government center. This is city funded voter intimidation. Ubeda should be suspended immediately.”
Here is @CityofMiami Police Officer Daniel Ubeda, in full uniform with badge and gun wearing his Trump mask inside of the polling location in government center.
This is city funded voter intimidation.
Ubeda should be suspended immediately. pic.twitter.com/TbJxu6mcem
— Steve Simeonidis (@stevesimeonidis) October 20, 2020
The City of Miami hasn’t confirmed the officers name. But it did verify the pictures.
“A uniformed officer, with a badge, and a gun wearing a Trump mask inside of a polling place is absolutely unacceptable and shouldn’t be tolerated,” Simeonidis told CBS4 Tuesday. “I was shocked when I saw it. I knew it was important to make sure that it was documented.”
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Chief Colina issued a statement saying, “We are aware of the photograph being circulated of a Miami Police officer wearing a political mask in uniform. This behavior is unacceptable, a violation of departmental policy, and is being addressed immediately.”
The police department did not reveal what punishment the officer might face or the specific policy the officer is accused of breaking.
According to Miami Mayor Francis Suarez, the officer was voting early and not working. But he was in full uniform and wearing a pro-Trump mask. Suarez said as a Miami Police officer, you can vote in uniform but you are not allowed to wear anything with party affiliation.
“It’s important for police to be perceived as impartial,” said Suarez.
State law bans officers from police placing, unless voting or getting permission from inspectors or the clerk. Also, state law says government workers are also not allowed to be involved in political campaigns while on duty.
“By wearing that mask, you could tell who we wanted to vote for. That is the issue at hand,” Miami Commissioner Ken Russell said.
Russell added city government workers were sent a policy reminder Tuesday about not participating in political activities and campaigns during work. That includes off-duty assignments, overtime and certain types of leave, like “I” time and family/medical.
The incident happened just a day after Chief Colina issued a message to voters, saying, “We want to assure, everyone in Miami of the ability to vote without coercion or harassment.”