The resignation letter is on the boss's desk and the two weeks' notice is almost up. It's death metal time.
Local TV station WFTV reports a Florida police officer was suspended days before his scheduled resignation after taking the stage at a death metal concert and singing along with the band, Vital Remains.
The Sanford Police Department reportedly suspended Officer Andrew Ricks on Tuesday after seeing a YouTube video of Ricks in uniform at the concert throwing up what The Orlando Sentinel calls the "rock-on" hand gesture. You know: this thing \m/. Or this very-new emoji your browser/phone might not have yet 🤘.
Is showing up on the stage of a metal concert a fire-able offense? Maybe, maybe not. It seems a bit redundant since Ricks had turned in a resignation letter in October and was serving out his last weeks with the department, according to the Sentinel.
But someone at Sanford PD must have googled Vital Remains' discography, and was not happy with what they saw. This is the track listing off the band's 2007 album Icons of Evil.
The song Ricks helped perform was not the 8-minute-long "Born to Rape the World" (charming), but a song off an earlier album called "Let the Killing Begin." Maybe not the best thing for a man in uniform to growl/shout into a microphone—especially given the racial tensions in the town following the Trayvon Martin killing in 2012.
Sanford PD didn't think so, either, with Police Chief Cecil Smith releasing a tersely-worded statement condemning Ricks' appearance.
"An incident of this nature erodes the thin fibers of trust which already exist between the community and the police, and it will not be tolerated within the Sanford Police Department," Smith said, according to WFTV.
Ricks was let go on Tuesday. He previously told the Sentinel he would not comment on the incident until after his resignation was effective.
Well, Mr. Ricks, today's the day and we'd love to get your side of the story. Were you trying to have a memorable departure from the force, or are you just an unfortunate metalhead caught on camera at the wrong time? Let's talk.