Pinellas County detention deputy fired for using racial slur, agency says

- A detention deputy with the Pinellas County Sheriff’s Office was fired after using a derogatory word about African Americans, the agency announced Friday morning.

The investigation into 30-year-old Jorge Lopez started in January, the sheriff’s office said. They said Deputy Lopez was working in the maximum security housing area at the Pinellas County Jail when he started speaking to a white co-worker asking if an African American deputy, assigned to the same area, was currently on the floor.

Investigators said Lopez told his coworker, “Well, there’s a lot of n-----s on this floor,” and witnesses recalled him describing inmates with the n-word. 

The coworker told Lopez he was offended and not to use the word when he is around, according to investigators, but continued using the term.

Lopez admitted to the allegations and racial slurs while working at the jail, the sheriff’s office said. He was officially terminated on Friday.

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