Editor’s note: The video at the bottom of this story contains profanity and racial slurs.
SILVER SPRING, MD — Montgomery County Police are investigating after a video posted on social media Thursday appears to show a white officer using a racial slur while talking to black men.
The video, which has been circulating online, was captured during an interaction between officers and four men at the McDonald’s located at 11146 New Hampshire Ave. in Silver Spring, police said. The officers arrived at the fast food restaurant around 10:36 a.m. to investigate trespassers.
A man who recorded the video told FOX 5 that he was waiting with three other men to be picked up for work when officers approached them. They were reportedly being cited for trespassing.
In the video, the female police officer can be heard using the N-word.
“Hey, you want to get out of here fast, right? So if we have more people, y’all n***** been trying to (inaudible) something,” she says.
Authorities have not released the name of the officer now under investigation, or said what her status is with the department.
“I couldn’t believe it. I could not believe it and I couldn’t believe her face that she made. She thought it was actually a cool thing to say and it’s not. She even said it was appropriate,” one of men said, according to NBC 4.
Montgomery County Executive Marc Elrich released a statement about the incident, condemning the officer for her actions.
“There are no circumstances that justify what the officer said,” Elrich wrote. “Every time something like this happens it hurts the reputation of all officers; and it works against efforts to build trust in the community.”
Elrich added that he spoke to Acting Police Chief Russell Hamill, who acknowledged the seriousness of the situation.
On Thursday night, Montgomery County Police released the video from the man who recorded the interaction, as well as police-worn body camera footage.
“The matter brought to our attention today is disturbing and contrary to our department’s values and our overarching mission to fairly and impartially serve our community,” the Montgomery County Police Department said in a statement. “The statements observed on the social media video clip are contrary to our extensive training curriculum that include implicit bias training and other training programs to ensure fair, unbiased, and non-discriminatory policing in our community.”
“We sincerely regret the disturbing nature of this video,” the department added. “We understand the pain such language causes the entire community.”
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Police said they are conducting an investigation into the matter.