On 6 July 2016, police officer Nakia Jones published a candid video via Facebook Live, during which she discussed the Alton Sterling shooting controversy:
Jones’ video was viewed more than six million times in just two days, rapidly introducing her to a massive social media audience.
Not long after the video was shared widely, the website Ask Kissy published a post claiming Jones had been disciplined (or possibly fired) for airing her views on the social network. The site appeared to conclude from statements made by Jones at a press conference that she had been suspended or terminated from her position:
New York-area radio station WQHT further stirred the pot in a blog post suggestively titled “Did Officer Nakia Jones Get Fired for Speaking Against Police?!” However, the tail end of that post said noted that “The mayor of Warrensville, Ohio, Brad Sellers shot down the rumors during a recent press conference.”
Cleveland affiliate WOIO had previously reported that Jones was neither fired nor suspended for her viral video, making WAHT’s a headline misleading one:
Mayor Brad Sellers said Jones did not violate the social media policy that is currently in place. She is currently on full duty at the police department and there was not violations of any policies with the City of Warrensville Heights.
The city said it’s received threats to city hall by the KKK.
Media personality Roland Martin also attempted to halt the spread of the rumor:
Well over a year later, in October 2017, Officer Jones was fired from the department for misusing paid leave time following an on-duty car crash in May 2017. She subsequently filed a lawsuit contending that the paid leave issue was merely an excuse for retaliating against her over the video she had posted back in 2016.