Wednesday, February 6, 2013
by: CHAO XIONG
St. Paul Police officer Robert Buth apologized for this photo taken of him dressed as a Muslim Target worker
A St. Paul police officer issued an apology Tuesday for dressing in a hijab for Halloween and posing for a picture that exploded on the Internet among the Twin Cities' Somali and Muslim communities.
"I apologize to anyone who may have been offended by the recently publicized photo which showed me at a private Halloween party on my personal time," officer Robert Buth said. "I sincerely regret that the image, which was never intended to become public, may have been viewed to be insensitive to the Muslim community."
The picture was posted on Twitter about 10 weeks ago, and resurfaced Sunday. Somali and Muslim community members began discussing the image online and brought it to the attention of the department's Twitter account.
Police Chief Thomas Smith opened an investigation Monday and issued a statement saying that he expected all officers to respect diversity.