St. Louis police officer accused of misconduct over op-ed in local paper
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A St. Louis police officer has been accused of misconduct after a local newspaper published an edited version of a post he made on Facebook.

On Aug. 24, Ryan Lynch posted on Facebook detailing what had happened during one of his on-duty shifts. An armed 16-year-old led police on a chase, a fight during a high school football game turned into a fatal shooting and the procession for an Illinois State Police trooper killed on the job was playing on the radio, he wrote.

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Lynch also called on state officials to boost support for police officers.

“The city gave us its worst tonight and I’m just appalled,” he wrote. “If you’re appalled as I am over the events this past summer, write your state politicians. We need backing here in the city. We need to be able to do our job fully. I’m tired of seeing dead babies.”

After the post was published, the St. Louis Post-Dispatch’s editorial page editor asked him if the paper could publish an edited version as an opinion piece. It ran online on Aug. 28.

A day later, an official from the police department’s internal affairs division accused Lynch of “conduct unbecoming of an officer,” saying he violated the department’s rule barring employees from talking to the media without proper clearance, the Post-Dispatch reported Wednesday.

“It is alleged that Police Officer Ryan Lynch … prepared an article that was published in the St. Louis Post-Dispatch on Aug. 28, 2019,” the complaint reportedly states. “No information concerning confidential investigations or operations will be released without the expressed approval of the Police Commissioner.”

The St. Louis Police Officers’ Association filed a grievance on Wednesday, alleging that Lynch didn’t “prepare” the piece for the Post-Dispatch and that he didn’t reveal any confidential information.

A spokesperson for the St. Louis Metropolitan Police Department did not immediately respond to a request for comment from The Hill.