How can a person be fired twice from the same job?
In the case of San Antonio police officer Mathew Luckhurst, his termination is referred to as an “indefinite suspension,” meaning he is not allowed to show up to work, is not getting paid and has been told he is not welcome back.
After being fired in November for the incident that took place last May, Luckhurst argued through his lawyer appealing the firing that he was just “joking” about giving the man a sandwich with human excrement in it.
But an internal affairs document states Luckhurst admitted to the deed when questioned by a superior.
“He went on with a short speech about how sorry he was and that he realized how bad the situation was,” the officer wrote. “His apology to us seemed heartfelt, but [the prank] was still completely uncalled for.”
A month after the sandwich incident in June, San Antonio police say Luckhurst defacated in the women’s bathroom stall at the department’s Bike Patrol Office, didn’t flush, then spread a brown substance with the consistency of tapioca on the toilet seat, giving the appearance there was feces on the seat.
He did this after a female officer requested her fellow employees to keep the bathroom clean.
Another San Antonio cop named Steve Albart also took part in the prank and was initially given an indefinite suspension before Chief William Mangus reduced his punishment to 30 days without pay.
Albart completed the suspension on January 19.
Luckhurst is appealing both suspensions through his lawyer, who has not yet responded to comment on the recent matter, but claimed the initial incident was just a prank that “spiraled out of control.”
“It’s a disgrace to the department. It’s a disgrace to the badge. And it’s embarrassing that someone would do something like that–ever do something like that,” San Antonio Police Chief McManus said before Luckhurst was allowed to return to work in the Bike Patrol Unit, where he has worked for over five years.
Shirley Gonzales, a councilwoman who represents the city’s massive center that provides services for the city’s homeless population Haven for Hope didn’t find the prank funny, saying the Luckhurt’s action was “horrible.”
“I think it’s horrible that people would prey on very vulnerable populations,” Gonzales said.
“It really is just so disappointing that one of our officers would prey on vulnerable populations. We are always working on behalf of those homeless people and Haven for Hope is still a place to go for any homeless person who needs resources.”