Home / Badge Abuse / Multiple Miami Cops Fired for Saying they Use Black Neighborhoods as a Shooting Range

Multiple Miami Cops Fired for Saying they Use Black Neighborhoods as a Shooting Range

Miami, FL — (RT) Three rookie police officers were fired just before days Christmas after joking in chat logs about using Miami’s black neighborhoods as a shooting range, according to an internal investigation.

“Anyone know of an indoor shooting range in Miami?” one officer asked in a WhatsApp group chat, according to a story first reported by the Miami Herald.

“Go to model city they have moving targets,” replied Kevin Bergnes.

“There’s a range in overtown on 1 and 11. Moving targets and they don’t charge,” added Miguel Valdes.



Overtown is the name of a predominant black neighborhood, just northwest of downtown Miami. It was originally called Colored Town during the Jim Crow era of the late 19th through the mid-20th century.

Officers Bergnes, Valdes and Bruce Alcin told an investigator they were “joking,” according to investigation documents, obtained by the Miami Herald.

But the social media chat upset a colleague and the three officers were fired two days before Christmas.

Stephen Lopez, an attorney for the officers, said the remarks were taken out of context and that there was no misconduct.

Lopez told the Miami Herald his clients were not racist as Alcin is African American, and Valdes has a black grandfather.

He said that the officers plan to sue the city because it discriminated against them.
It is not the first time that Miami police officers have been embroiled in a racial profiling scandal.

In January 2015, a National Guard Sergeant paid a visit to a shooting range in Medley, Florida and found North Miami Beach Police had been doing shooting drills using mug shots of six black males as targets.

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To make matters worse, Valerie Deant recognized one of the images as her brother, Woody.

About 15 years earlier, Woody Deant had been arrested over his involvement in a drag racing incident that left two people dead. Deant, whose image at the firing range had been sprayed by bullets, had spent four years behind bars.

North Miami Beach Police Chief J. Scott Dennis defended the actions of his officers, some of whom he said are minorities themselves. Dennis said his department also uses images of whites and Latinos for target practice.

“Our policies were not violated,” the police chief was quoted by NPR as saying. “There is no discipline forthcoming for the individuals who were involved with this.”

He admitted, however, that the officers could have exercised better judgment, because one of the men, Woody Deant, “would be someone that was on the streets of North Miami Beach.”

Two years prior in April 2013, a Florida policeman lost his job for using photos of Trayvon Martin, the young black man who was shot and killed last year by a neighborhood watchman, for target practice.

  • Phil Freeman

    All cops should lose their jobs, they are a danger to the public health and general welfare.

    • The Cat’s Vagina

      OK, then what? Anarchy isn’t going to work, y’know. The reason we keep putting up with all this bullshit is because of the indisputable reality that we NEED people to enforce the law and protect the weak and helpless from the predatory. The fact that cops are becoming predatory is no reason to just get rid of law enforcement.

      • Phil Freeman

        Are you familiar with the origins of American policing and it’s functions? I think if you use those search terms you’ll find your position to be erroneous. The scotus has held that the police have no duty to protect anyone. So if that’s the case what is their function? Revenue generation!

      • TechGump

        Laws and enforcement can, will, and in fact do exist without monopolizing the process via State. Anarchy is very much feasible. Perhaps you’re interested in an intelectual debate on the matter: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=UXn2FH4hvn4

        “… becoming predatory…” State and it’s enforcement arm has always been the largest predator killing hundreds of millions; nothing compares, not close. https://www.hawaii.edu/powerkills/20TH.HTM

        • TOPDOG1

          Having resided in several, what was actually, Anarchist states I have many insights on this matter.I am of the opinion that a strong people do not need a strong government. The Authoritarians forced this police domination onto me, I did not choose it. Few realize that the police are all but worthless. They refuse to do justice nor will they allow anyone else to do so either. Our, and other, police societies are a colossal failure and should be removed by reform.Nor will education alone reform, it only makes them more efficient at subjugation of free people. Of course the Authoritarians fear anarchy, they instinctively realize it as the tool that will remove them from power.Nor can one avoid chaos, it is inseparable from anarchy, it is the foundation of a new and perfect order.

      • Dan Quixoté

        I don’t think it’s Anarchy, per se, that’s what you fear – I’m guessing it’s chaos, danger, and suffering, which is totally understandable. Anarchy just means a lack of a formal hierarchy. The solution to the safety problem is, and has always been, a conscientious voluntaryism. In our unincorporated but dense neighborhood, we look after each other, and a few of us men firmly but gently keep order. I’ve engaged the youth who are causing problems and their parents, to find solutions, and my very “awake” ex-cop/ex-Marine counterpart “coaches” the adults. No one calls the cops, even when there’s been vandalism or theft or assault, because we neighbors know in our hearts how to do restorative justice infinitely better than the State. I just wanted to share the hope that’s available. In our neighborhood it happens to be fairly patriarchal, but there’s nothing specific or magic about that – I think anyone who feels the call to cura personalis – the direct care of persons – is qualified. TFTP has written on a whole town that operates this way, and also on cities where the police force have gone on full strike – the results have been the opposite of what you’ve feared.

      • iMRightNURNot


  • Kountry Bumpkin

    The truth is that so-called “law enforcement” is the only vestige of organized crime that law abiding citizens have to fear in their every day lives. Even at its peak the mob wasn’t as much a threat to the average person as this class of criminals are.

  • Ibcamn

    cops are worthless,they are just responders at best,they are piss poorly trained and are retarded to bot..
    just plain criminals,cops are serial rapists and theives and murderers,nothing more,they earn the hate the american people have for them…..criminals.

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    That was only a joke, they actually use white neighborhoods a whole lot more.