The North Chicago Police Department has been accused of racism after it published an academy brochure apparently peppered with stereotypes of African-Americans—including a picture of comedian Dave Chapelle’s junkie alter-ego Tyrone Biggums.
The brochure, given to participants in the North Chicago Citizen Police Academy last week, features a smiling African-American man handcuffed in an orange prison jumpsuit, the Chicago Sun Times reported.
There is even a page with a picture of Chappelle appearing as the stumbling drug addict he created for his Comedy Central show, with another man portrayed as bug-eyed and slack-jawed in a mug shot.
Lake County NAACP president Jennifer Witherspoon said the handout reinforces ‘every negative stereotype blacks as a people have been fighting against.’
Lake County State’s Attorney Mike Nerheim calls the handout ‘incredibly disturbing.’
The brochure’s cover features Nerheim opposite Tom Cruise as a military defense attorney from the film ‘A Few Good Men.’
The brochure also has pictures of television TV cop Barney Fife, Judge Judy and Lindsay Lohan, big-bellied white police officers and acquitted murder defendant Casey Anthony.
North Chicago Police Chief James Jackson is calling the handout an ill-considered attempt at humor.
‘We should have caught it,’ said Jackson.
However, local activist Ralph Peterson says the brochure raises ‘another red flag’ on the North Chicago police.
‘It’s more bad judgment. For officers to pass out a pamphlet like this screams a need for sensitivity and that this department is not capable of policing the black community,’ he said, pointing to a police brutality case that has the department snared in a federal wrongful-death lawsuit.
[Editor’s Note: Images from the pamphlet are available at the original article link below.]