Nashville ADA fired over facebook post; co-worker offended on behalf of ‘white police officer son’

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Glenn Funk demanded the resignation of his first male Latino ADA, Cesar Arbelaez, after he made a social media post regarding police reform that offended a co-worker who said he should consider the effect on their “white police officer son”. Albelaez refused to resign; Glenn Funk fired him.

On June 9th, District Attorney General (DA,) Glenn Funk requested that Assistant District Attorney (ADA,) Cesar Arbelaez, resign or face termination. This request was made as a result of a Facebook comment made by ADA Arbelaez to his friend. An exact copy of the social media post was not able to be obtained for this story.

Email (via open records)
Email (via open records)

On June 10th, Mr. Arbelaez emailed DA Funk out of confusion. He did not believe to have disregarded any company policies or make any offensive remarks that could harm his ability to do his job. In his email, ADA Arbelaez mentioned he suspected the complaints came from Kyle and Pam Anderson, within the DA’s office. He believed that the Anderson’s were surveilling his Facebook page because they have very different political views, especially concerning police reform and racial disparities.

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Latino Assistant District Attorney (Source Facebook)
Latino Assistant District Attorney (Source Facebook)

ADA Arbelaez also pointed out to DA Funk that Mrs. Anderson specifically told him that he should consider the effect of his statements on her “white” police officer son. Even after her statement, Arbelaez tried to make amends by deleting the comment. He goes on to explain to DA Funk that since he is one of a few minority ADAs his threat of termination could be construed as discriminatory.

Email (via open records)
Email (via open records)

On June 15th, DA Funk finally replied to Mr. Arbelaez disagreeing in “several ways.” He stated that Arbelaez violated the “Personal Use of Social Media” policy which he had signed on August 3, 2018. Funk also claimed Arbelaez’s accusations of discrimination were not just offensive, but “totally inaccurate.” He claims to have “increased diversity within the ranks of Assistant District Attorneys by 750%.”

We reached out to the DA’s office for Arbelaez’s personnel file and they sent us a few documents most of which reflected poorly on him. We also reached out to Arbelaez for a statement, but he said he has no comment at this time. There have been two terminations from the DA’s office since January 1st, 2020.

Below is the social media policy adopted by the DA’s Office:

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