The University of Colorado Police Department has fired Officer Drew Matthews for allegedly posting anti-Black and anti-homeless comments on Reddit, according to The Daily Camera.
Matthews was placed on administrative leave in April after Safe Access for Everyone (SAFE), a police abolition and mutual aid group, posted a thread on Twitter connecting the officer to the anonymous account /u/BocoRam18.
Emerson Book, a member of SAFE, spoke with The CU Independent back in April and said that the group had been monitoring the account since 2020, finding a series of racist and anti-Semitic remarks, in addition to comments about unhoused people he called to attack homeless people with high-pressure fire hoses.
Members of SAFE made this connection to Matthews because he was verified as a campus police officer, per the rules of the subreddit /r/ProtectandServe. The account also frequently commented on the /r/Boulder and /r/CUBoulder boards. It wasn’t until a picture posted to Matthews’s personal Facebook profile was also posted on the Reddit account that the group made the connection and accused the officer.
After an internal investigation, CU Boulder Police Chief Doreen Jokerst fired Matthews, according to CU officials in an email to The Daily Camera.
“After a thorough review, Chief of Police Jokerst notified Mr. Matthews that his employment was terminated because it was determined he could not effectively continue to perform his police duties for CU Boulder,” CU officials said in a statement.
Matthews had been an officer with CUPD since 2015. In other screenshots of the accounts, Matthews allegedly also called the resignation of a Boulder police officer “all media and pretend outrage” after the officer pulled a gun on an unarmed Black man “all media and pretend outrage” and compared vaccine mandates to the Holocaust.
“CUPD is committed to professional standards and adherence to its department policies,” CU officials said in their statement.
Contact CU Independent Managing Editor William Oster at William.Oster@colorado.edu.