Louisiana police officer placed on leave after saying Ocasio-Cortez 'needs a round' in Facebook post

The Louisiana police officer who suggested Rep. Alexandria Ocasio-CortezAlexandria Ocasio-CortezOcasio-Cortez on food assistance cuts: 'If this happened then, we might've just starved' Youth climate activists grade top 2020 Democrats on Green New Deal commitment Sanders to join youth climate strikers in Iowa MORE (D-N.Y.) needed to be shot in a Facebook post has reportedly been placed on administrative leave. 

The Gretna Police Department announced the move in an email sent Monday, according to NOLA.com. The announcement said the officer, Charlie Rispoli, would be suspended without pay pending the results of an internal investigation. 

The development comes as Rispoli's comments about the New York congresswoman gain national attention. Ocasio-Cortez said on Twitter that the officer's post was a consequence of President TrumpDonald John TrumpTrumps light 97th annual National Christmas Tree Trump to hold campaign rally in Michigan 'Don't mess with Mama': Pelosi's daughter tweets support following press conference comments MORE's rhetoric. 

"This is Trump’s goal when he uses targeted language & threatens elected officials who don’t agree w/ his political agenda. It’s authoritarian behavior," Ocasio-Cortez said in tweet that linked to a story about Rispoli's post. "The President is sowing violence. He’s creating an environment where people can get hurt & he claims plausible deniability."

Rispoli, who has been a member of the Gretna Police Department since 2005, last week shared a Facebook post that described Ocasio-Cortez as a "vile idiot" who "needs a round."

"And I don't mean the kind she used to serve," Rispoli said, apparently referencing Ocasio-Cortez's job as a bartender. 


The post included a link to a story from Taters Gonna Tate titled "Ocasio-Cortez on the Budget: 'We Pay Soldiers Too Much.'" The photo on the post included a "satire" label. 

Snopes, a fact-checking website, noted that the publisher frequently shares inflammatory misinformation and that the story was false. Ocasio-Cortez has never said the U.S. pays soldiers too much. 

Rispoli deleted the post on Friday and took down his Facebook page on Saturday, NOLA.com reported. 

Chief Arthur Lawson told the news outlet over the weekend that he did not believe Rispoli's comments represented a threat against the congresswomen. But he did say that the Facebook post was "disturbing."

"I will tell you this: This will not go unchecked," Lawson said. "I’m not going to take this lightly and this will be dealt with on our end. It’s not something we want someone that’s affiliated with our department to make these types of statements. That’s not going to happen."

He also said that the social media post likely violated a social media department policy. 

The Gretna Police Department did not immediately respond to a request for further comment from The Hill. 

Gretna police added on Monday that Rispoli had recently completed training that deals with social media and racial bias, NBC affiliate WDSU reported

"I'm very surprised particularly all of the effort we put into training our officers not to put themselves or put this department into these types of situations," Lawson said.