Philadelphia Official Fired After Being Caught Tearing Down Children’s BLM Signs

Megan Everts

Michael Henkel was fired after a video of him tearing down Black Lives Matter signs gained traction on social media.

Michael Henkel, a Philadelphia Family Court supervisor, was fired from his job on Monday after a video surfaced online showing him “tearing down Black Lives Matter signs from a fence at a South Philadelphia park and saying he doesn’t care about black lives,” reported the Philadelphia Inquirer.

  • The video was posted on a woman’s Facebook page on Sunday and “attracted more than 800 comments and 2,000 shares by noon Monday.”
  • “In the video, a woman is heard telling Henkel that the signs that he was tearing down were not his property,” to which Henkel responded: “I know. It’s the city. I pay for this. ... Yeah, my taxes pay for this place, yep."
  • After the woman responded saying that “Black Lives Matter,” Henkel said: “Not to me, they don’t."
  • Though the woman removed her post from public view on Monday, the “video was also shared on Instagram on the nogunzone account.”

  • The signs that Henkel was tearing down were “put up on the fence as part of a Friday afternoon, kid-friendly march” that was “organized by Passyunk Square neighbors and the Philadelphia Student Union.”
  • In a statement on Monday, Marty O’Rourke, a Family Court spokesperson confirmed that Henkel was terminated “‘based on multiple violations’ of the state court system’s Code of Conduct and its Non-Discrimination and Equal Employment Policy.”
  • O’Rourke added: “The Court takes the incident very seriously and believes Mr. Henkel’s behavior as shown in the video is egregious and totally unacceptable for an employee of the Courts.”

Henkel did not respond to any requests for comment on Monday.

Read more here.

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