A police chief who worked for the City of Bethlehem, Pennsylvania, for three decades was forced into retirement this week because of a Facebook post that he shared on his page disparaging NBA players, the city's mayor said in a statement Friday.
Chief Mark DiLuzio's departure came a few days after he apparently shared what Mayor Robert Donchez described as "an offensive Facebook post."
The mayor also said he respects DiLuzio's decades of service to the city and that Donchez would not let DiLuzio's Facebook share "outweigh our appreciation for the Chief’s dedication and service to the City of Bethlehem for the over 30 years," according to the mayor's statement on the city website.
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The post reportedly involved an image of Lebron James and disparaged NBA players because of their protests over the shooting of Jacob Blake, an unarmed Black man in Wisconsin.
DiLuzio also reportedly took down the post and apologized to friends and colleagues for sharing the post, according to LehighValleyLive.com.
"Chief DiLuzio has accepted that his standing in the community has been compromised," Donchez said in his statement. "This has happened at a time when the citizens of Bethlehem justly expect the effectiveness of their Chief of Police to be beyond reproach."
The mayor said Deputy Chief Scott Meixell is interim police chief, effective immediately.