Investigator finds Newburgh councilman guilty of violating workplace violence prevention policy (NOTE: THIS STORY CONTAINS VULGAR LANGUAGE)

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Newburgh City Councilman Omari Shakur curses out city officer who asks to see his driver's license on February 22, 2020

NEWBURGH – An investigator hired by the City of Newburgh has determined that Councilman Omari Shakur violated the city’s Workplace Violence Prevention Policy on three occasions in 2020.

Dr. John Coverdale of the Center for Workplace Solutions was tasked with investigating Shakur’s behavior toward six police officers while they conducted their lawful duties.

Mid-Hudson News obtained the findings via a freedom of information request. The names of the officers filing the complaints were redacted.

The report is based on interviews Coverdale conducted with the complainant officers, body camera video and video Shakur recorded on his cell phone during confrontations and posted live on Facebook. The councilman declined an invitation to meet with Coverdale to explain his behavior.

The report lays out Shakur’s confrontations in highly graphic and vulgar terms.

“As a result of this investigation, I find that Councilman Shakur violated the City of Newburgh’s Violence Prevention Policy on June 20th, when he, in the presence of several civilians, directed foul and inappropriate language toward Officer (redacted) and other officers and attempted to interfere with the traffic stop,” Coverdale wrote in his report. “Specifically, Councilman Shakur can be heard calling the police ‘punk ass motherfuckers,’ ‘bitch ass motherfuckers,’ and saying, ‘fuck the police. I don’t give a fuck, fuck all you punk ass motherfuckers, you bitch ass motherfuckers’.”

Councilman Omari Shakur

Coverdale also wrote that Shakur, “can also be heard saying to the male civilian standing outside of the stopped vehicle to ‘tell them to give you a fucking ticket or get the fuck out of your face’.”

The investigator wrote that Shakur “has the right to videotape police activity. However, the language he used while doing so on June 20th violated the City of Newburgh’s policy in that his conduct constituted ‘aggressive behavior including but not limited to verbal threats, displays of force, stalking or other threatening behavior that reasonably rises to the level of perception of potential violence occurring in the workplace’.”

Coverdale also found Shakur guilty of similar violations during interactions with police officers on July 11 and October 26.

Coverdale’s report makes no recommendations as to any potential penalties for the violations.

This is not the first documentation of Shakur’s ratings at police officers. In one situation in 2020, he went on a 20-minute diatribe when officers questioned him in his vehicle after he stopped it in the middle of a city street.