North Carolina Fire Investigator Loses Job Over Michael Brown Facebook Comments

North Carolina fire investigator Crystal Eschert says she was fired for posting negative comments about Michael Brown on Facebook.

The Charlotte Fire Department staffer posted, “If you are a thug and worthless to society, it’s not about race.”

Crystal Eschert posted the Michael Brown comment on Facebook, as she wondered why a North Carolina police shooting was not getting the same level of press and outrage as the Darren Wilson Ferguson shooting.

The Michael Brown Facebook comments by Crystal Eschert were forwarded to the Charlotte City Hall, and she soon lost her job as a fire investigator. Eschert said she feels the Facebook post about Brown being a “thug” was merely an excuse for the termination. She had recently raised safety concerns about a local building utilized by Charlotte city employees.

“There was an elevator that went from the basement up and it was wooden. And when we went in the spring, it didn’t want to work to well. So we had to jump to make it function,” Eschert said when referencing the North Graham Street building used by city employees. “I saw wires hanging down, whether they were phone wires or electric wires. I didn’t feet at that point it was safe, absolutely not. The type of work that we do, security is a massive concern.”

Eschert also posted this Michael Brown Ferguson reference on Facebook before being fired.

“Where is Obama? Where is Holder? Where is Al Sharpton? Where are Trayvon Martin’s parents? Where are all the white guy supports? So WHY is everyone MAKING it a racial issue?!? So tired of hearing it’s a racial thing. If you are a thug and worthless to society, it’s not race — You’re just a waste no matter what religion, race or sex you are.”

Charlotte City Manager Ron Carlee told local WFAE News that Crystal Eschert’s Facebook comments were considered “discriminatory.” Some legal experts who have reviewed the Michael Brown comments by Eschert feel the Facebook post should have been deemed free speech.

“She said something that at best was racially insensitive, but on a public issue on a private page,” Duke University Center on Law, Race, and Politics founding director Guy Charles said. “Between the hand that she’s holding and the hand that the city’s holding, I think I’d prefer to have her hand.”

The Charlotte fire investigator is fighting the termination by the city.


UCLA Law professor Eugene Volokh has a slightly different opinion about the Crystal Eschert’s Michael Brown Facebook post.

“I’m inclined to say the employee has a pretty strong case here, but when it comes to the government acting as an employer, the legal rules are quite vague,” Volokh said.

Crystal Eschert’s work performance reviews have reportedly praised her performance.

What do you think about North Carolina fire investigator Crystal Eschert getting fired for Michael Brown comments on Facebook?

[Image via: WSOC-TV]