Concerns shared about Raleigh Police Department’s social media posts during protests

RALEIGH, N.C. (WNCN) — Concerns have centered around some of the Raleigh Police Department’s social media posts during the recent protests and riots.

During the protests, Raleigh Police took to Twitter to provide updates.

They posted about various details: Arrests, fireworks thrown at officers, protesters shaking police precinct gates and photos of graffiti and other damage.

The tweets were met with both support and criticism.

Then this week, Raleigh City Councilor Jonathan Melton tweeted the following: “I’ve heard concerns about tweets sent from the RPD account, and I’ve reviewed some tweets and found them unhelpful. I’ve raised this issue with staff, and I’m informed that the city is revising our social media policy. I will share the update as soon as I receive it.”

CBS 17 asked the councilor for more information and an interview, which he declined.

CBS 17 also reached out to RPD asking for their response, more information and an interview. They solely sent the following statement:

The purpose of tweeting during the protests is to document in real-time what is unfolding during the protests and allow our followers to remain informed of how the RPD is experiencing the protest. The messages are direct and straight forward, without offering an opinion. There is only one call to action in the tweets – for those participating in protests to remain peaceful. As opposed to relying on the traditional media or others to tell our story, we took the opportunity to tell our own. Our residents expect and deserve transparency and this is another avenue that we can use to deliver that. The RPD follows the City’s social media policy.

Raleigh Police Department Social Media Team

CBS 17 obtained and looked over the city’s social media policy. RPD’s tweets don’t appear to violate it.

A city spokesperson confirmed the policy is currently under review, and said it’s a routine review that began before Councilor Melton expressed concerns.

The city was not able to provide what the recommended changes are since they have not yet gone before council.

The revisions are expected to be implemented within the next few months.

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