The Associated Press
NEW YORK — Several female police officers on Monday accused sergeants of insulting them by echoing the racially charged remarks that led to the firing of radio host Don Imus.
A sergeant insulted three officers by calling them "hos" during a recent roll call at a Brooklyn stationhouse, the women said at a news conference outside police headquarters in Manhattan.
"We felt violated and humiliated," Officer Tronnette Jackson said.
Their lawyer said a discrimination complaint was filed in federal court, alleging the sergeant used the term April 15 against Jackson and Karen Nelson, who are black, and Maria Gomez, who is Hispanic.
Another officer chimed in by calling them "nappy-headed hos," said the lawyer, Bonita Zelman. "Ho" is a slang term for a prostitute.
Police officials have transferred the sergeant and the officer out of Brooklyn's 70th Precinct and condemned any use of racist or sexist remarks.
In separate incident, a longtime narcotics detective said Sunday that a sergeant told her April 12 not to give him "lip" or he'd call her "a nappy-headed ho," the same phrase used by Imus. The sergeant is on leave.
The comment "cut me to the core," said Detective Aretha Williams. "I find it disrespectful, racist, sexist. It can't be tolerated."
Police Commissioner Raymond Kelly condemned any use of the terms.
"This language is unacceptable under any circumstances and even more egregious when it comes from individuals in positions of authority," he said in a statement.
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CBS Radio fired Imus from his nationally syndicated radio program April 12, eight days after he described the Rutgers women's basketball team, which includes eight black women, as "nappy-headed hos."