A New Jersey police officer who caused outrage after being caught on video claiming he didn’t have to follow the Constitution because Obama had “decimated” the bill of rights has resigned.
As we reported yesterday in a story that was linked on the Drudge Report before going viral, Helmetta Police Officer Richard Recine responded to resident Steve Wronko’s complaint about corruption at a local animal shelter and violations of his first and fourth amendment rights by remarking, “Obama just decimated the freakin’ Constitution, so I don’t give a damn. If he doesn’t follow the Constitution, we don’t have to.”
The outburst prompted a huge backlash, with the video receiving over 220,000 views and hundreds of irate comments.
Despite initially being the subject of an internal affairs investigation, Recine offered his resignation on Thursday morning, likely as a result of the heated online response.
Police Director Robert Manney immediately accepted Recine’s resignation, labeling his behavior an “embarrassment,” “uncalled for” and “unprofessional.” It is not clear whether Recine will also step down from the Board of Fire Commissioners of District 2 in Piscataway, which is an elected position.
However, Manney defended Recine and other officers’ actions in ejecting Wronko for taking pictures inside the borough’s Municipal Building.
“He was in our building and he got some of our employees upset,” said Manney. “They were worried because they’ve seen him before lurking around. In my opinion he was looking for an issue.”
Wronko subsequently uploaded a full version of the encounter with Recine and the other officers. During the clip, Recine suggests that Wronko could be a terrorist with a bomb simply because he is filming inside of a public building.
“Recine worked as a part-time special police officer, earning an hourly wage while collecting a $79,000 annual pension for his retirement as a police officer from Franklin in 2006,” reports MyCentralJersey.com.
Watch the full encounter below.