AR Reporter Quits Over Police Chief’s “Vindictive” Facebook Posts


Jonesboro, Ar., Sun police reporter Sunshine Crump resigned Monday after being repeatedly attacked on Facebook by Jonesboro Police Chief Mike Yates, reports She told her paper. “I do not feel safe here, and I will not continue to be put in a position of self-defense. I am an innocent person and an American citizen.” Among the comments Yates posted about the reporter: “Pro-dope smoking, law license revoked, left wing liberal, smelly, arrested by police, unscrupulous reporter;” * “This is the kind of journalism we have now … ask ole Sunshine (reporter) why her law license got suspended next time you see her;” “Dealing with ole Sunshine is like trying to pick up a dog turd by the 'clean end.'”

Waylon Harris, the Sun's managing editor, quoted Crump as saying allegations about drug use were false. She said she once had a law license in Texas, but quit practice and stopped paying annual licensing fees, resulting in a procedural suspension. She was arrested once in college for participating in a protest. The charge was dropped. The newspaper's publisher and its law firm have asked the city to take action against the chief. “Any other entity would have already fired or suspended an employee who made these types of vindictive comments,” says publisher David Mosesso, “and our city department heads should obviously be held to an even higher standard.” The chief says his comments about Crump are “constitutionally protected free speech” and that “I didn't sacrifice my rights to freedom of speech for the sake of my job as police chief.”

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