MCKEESPORT (KDKA) — Officer Melissa Adamson served in the Pitcairn Police Department from November of 2015 until September 20, 2016, when she resigned for another work opportunity, according to Pitcairn Chief of Police Scott Farally.
“She had good work ethic. She would work, go to court, complete reports in a timely fashion. She would get out in the community and talk to people. She was involved in a lot of civic functions throughout the community. I actually had no complaints,” said Farally.
The mayor of McKeesport fired her after an inappropriate social media post surfaced. The post allegedly showed the officer in uniform with the caption, “I’m the law today,” followed by a racial slur.
Chief Farally told KDKA he believes this issue serves as a learning lesson. Chief Farally said his department is offering more diversity training and more implicit bias training.
According to Chief Farally, “We need to educate our officers more on social media and the ethics that revolve around social media and technology.”
Because Adamson was no longer employed at the Pitcairn Police Department when the photo surfaced, Chief Farally said he was unable to investigate or take any type of disciplinary action.
“I would have spoke to her about this issue. However, she wasn’t employed. Therefore, I could not actually investigate something on that behalf or take any type of disciplinary action because she was employed by another department,” said Farally.
KDKA asked Chief Farally if he knew whether anyone from his department shared the photo.
He said, “I can tell you I did ask my police officers and every one of them said no they did not disseminate this information.”
Chief Farally told KDKA, “It was a bad choice. Young police officer, just got out of the academy, made a bad choice.”