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10,000 sign petition calling for firing of NYPD cop who used racial slurs during trespassing incident

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Posted at 12:52 PM, Dec 31, 2019
and last updated 2019-12-31 12:52:57-05

More than 10,000 people have signed an online petition calling for the firing of a New York Police Department officer who was sentenced to jail time for assault and trespassing during a trip to Nashville.

Change.org petition calls for the firing of NYPD Officer Mark J. Reynolds, who used racial slurs while trespassing in a home that he thought was his Airbnb during a Bachelor Party. The petition, which was started last week, currently has 10,000 signatures with a goal to reach 15,000.

At 2:30 a.m. on July 9, 2018, Reynolds kicked through the door of Conese Halliburton's home. Home surveillance footage shows Reynolds screaming expletives at Halliburton's sons and threatening them.

"Try to shoot me; I'll break every bone in your f****** neck. You f****** n******," Reynolds said, according to Scripps station WTVF in Nashville.

Reynolds testified that he was drunk at the time of the incident.

Halliburton says that when two of her neighbors confronted Reynolds on the street about the incident the next day, he apologized. But others in the group laughed about having "immunity" because they were police officers.

Reynolds was initially charged with assault and aggravated burglary but pleaded no contest to one count of aggravated criminal trespassing and three counts of assault. He was sentenced to 15 days in jail and is required to return to Nashville every six months to court for review.

According to WTVF, Reynolds was decommissioned — meaning he's unable to make arrests or do other aspects of his job — upon entering his no-contest plea. But weeks later, the New York Times reports that Reynolds still is employed as an officer with the NYPD.

A "top department official" told the New York Times that the process in Reynolds' case "was moving forward and questioning will take place imminently."

It's not uncommon for discipline to take years to be doled out in the NYPD. Daniel Pantaleo was fired from the department and stripped of benefits earlier this year for his role in the death of Eric Garner in 2014. Pantaleo has sued to be reinstated.

Alex Hider is a writer for the E.W. Scripps National Desk. Follow him on Twitter @alexhider.