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Ohio officer reassigned after controversial YouTube.com videos

The Associated Press
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COLUMBUS, Ohio The city police department reassigned a patrol officer to a desk job Tuesday after she posted on YouTube a series of homemade videos disparaging blacks, Jews, Cubans and illegal immigrants.

Officer Susan Purtee, 60, and her sister, Barbara Gordon-Bell, 52, of Parkland, made and distributed videos blaming those groups for problems in U.S. society.

In a statement, Mayor Michael Coleman called the videos offensive. The police division started an internal administrative investigation.

Purtee, a 15-year veteran who patrols day shift, wears civilian clothes in the videos and never mentions her occupation. A description of the videos on the sisters' website notes that she is a law enforcement officer.

Purtee could not be reached for comment. A telephone number listed in her name in the suburb of Grove City rang unanswered.

Gordon-Bell said she and her sister made the videos for fun and to reveal the truth about America. The videos refer to blacks, Jews, Cubans and illegal immigrants as ''filthy'' and ''scumbags'' and accuse Jews of abusing their positions at the top of the nation's media and entertainment industries, including Disney, Viacom and The Associated Press.

The sisters' videos averaged between 500 and 2,000 views each, relatively few for the video-sharing website. YouTube's most popular videos usually receive hundreds of thousands of views.

The Fraternal Order of Police has said the union would provide Purtee with legal representation during an administrative investigation.

''It appears she is speaking out, utilizing her First Amendment rights,'' said Jim Gilbert, president of the local FOP.

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