SEATTLE — Port of Seattle Police Officer Greg Anderson is on paid administrative leave.
Anderson, 39, posted a video on Instagram last week encouraging officers not to enforce “stay-at-home” orders, calling them a violation of constitutional rights.
“I’ve seen officers nationwide enforcing tyrannical orders against the people,” said Anderson in the nearly eight-minute video. "I want to remind you regardless of where you stand on the coronavirus, we don’t have the authority to do those things to people just because a mayor or a governor tells you otherwise.
“We don’t get to violate people's constitutional rights because someone in our chain of command tells us otherwise. It's not how this country works."
The Instagram video posted a week ago has nearly 700,000 views. It’s also posted on YouTube.
Anderson made a second video and posted it yesterday, addressing what has happened since the first video.
He says at first his superiors supported the video, but as the video views grew, they demanded he take it down. When he didn’t, he was placed on paid administrative leave.
KIRO 7 asked The Port of Seattle for an interview. Instead the Port released a statement :
“The officer is currently on paid administrative leave pending investigation. The Port does not comment on pending personnel matters.”
But Port of Seattle Police Chief Rod Covey posted on the Port of Seattle Police Department’s Facebook page.
"Greg has always had the ability to express his opinions on what is going on in the country like all other Americans. However, he is not allowed to do so while on duty, wearing our uniform, wearing our badge and while driving our patrol car, " wrote Covey. “Greg has chosen this course of action even after he and I spoke and while also knowing that his actions were outside of well-established policy.”
KIRO 7 reached out to Anderson and is waiting for a response. From his videos, it is clear Anderson expects to lose his job.
There are two Go Fund Me pages set up to support him. They’ve raised nearly $300,000, in the last 24 hours.
In his first video Anderson told other officers, “You need to step up and say ‘No, that’s not me, that’s not what I signed up for and that’s going against my oath.’ And if that costs you your job, so be it; at least you’ll be able to look at yourself in the mirror at night.”
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