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Court upholds firing of deputy who claimed racism

•  Headline News     updated  2012/01/16 09:31

A federal appeals court has upheld the firing of an Indiana sheriff's deputy who accused the department of racism in part because detectives watched excerpts from the movie "Blazing Saddles" in his presence.

The Seventh Circuit Court of Appeals ruled Friday that Warrick County Sheriff's Deputy Kevin Harris' 2007 firing for insubordination was legal. Harris was let go during a standard one-year probationary period.

Harris claimed white officers on probation received better treatment despite their performance problems. Harris also claimed other deputies gave him racially tinged nicknames modeled after African-American TV characters, according to court documents.

A federal judge in Indianapolis, however, ruled there wasn't enough evidence to show discrimination, and the appeals court agreed.

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