Johnston County Sheriff Steve Bizzell apologized Sunday for his portrayal of the Mexican immigrant community in a News & Observer article about his county's growing Hispanic population.
The apology came in a one-paragraph statement e-mailed to the newspaper shortly before 5 p.m. after Sunday morning's newspaper included a front-page article in which Bizzell criticized illegal immigrants for "breeding like rabbits" and declared, "Mexicans are trashy."
Tony Asion, the executive director of the North Carolina nonprofit advocacy group El Pueblo, said he had to stop reading Sunday's article because the sheriff's comments made him so angry. Bizzell's apology was not good enough, he added.
"I don't want his apology, I want his badge," said Asion, who was born in Cuba. "As a 20-year veteran of the Delaware State Police force, I resent the fact that he's even a cop."
Bizzell's comments were made in a series of four interviews conducted over a period of more than a month.
In his statement Sunday, Bizzell apologized for making "broad statements that reflected on the legal and law-abiding Hispanic population -- that was never my intention."
Read the complete story at newsobserver.com
Read the initial story at newsobserver.com