A union organizer in upstate New York has landed in hot water after tweeting support and prayers for an armed carjacker who opened fire on two local police officers.
Officers Joshua Comitale and Chad Klein were both fired upon while responding to a gunpoint carjacking Saturday night. Klein was shot in the shoulder at point-blank range, while Comitale was shot multiple times in the legs. Both officers will undergo surgeries but are expected to recover from their injuries.
The suspect, 39-year-old Thaddeus Faison, was shot multiple times and continued to resist arrest. He would later succumb to his injuries.
While most in the community were praising the officers for their heroic actions in getting Faison, a career criminal who police Chief John Tedesco described as “very violent” off the streets, a local union organizer had a very different take.
Sean Collins, listed as an Albany organizer for SEIU Local 200 United, repeatedly posted support for the carjacker on social media, while simultaneously denouncing the police for their actions.
Collins’ initial ire was raised by a tweet from mayoral candidate Rodney Wiltshire, a Democrat who offered prayers for the officers. Wiltshire wrote, “Please say prayers for our officers who were just shot in the line of duty.” The SEIU employee responded forcefully, “AND FOR THE SUSPECT TOO, FFS.”
The response seemed peculiar, since Collins’ SEIU colleagues at Local 200 United, as well as 1199 SEIU, have endorsed and supported Wiltshire in his run for mayor of Troy — and his previous campaign for city council.
Under fire, Collins refused to back down from his controversial remarks, tweeting hours later, “While the reactionaries vie for who loves the cops the most, my thoughts lie with Thaddeus’ family – he is more than the sum of his mistakes.”
The local organizer and former intern for Democratic Congressman Paul Tonko explained that the police officers were actually to blame for the shooting incident, simply by virtue of showing up on the scene.
“Up until Klein and Comatile showed,” Collins wrote, “everyone was alive and unharmed.”
Faison had an extensive criminal history, including eight arrests of which four were classified as “violent crimes.”
Rusty Weiss is a long-time political analyst and editor of the New York political blog, The Mental Recession. His work has appeared at The Daily Caller, FreedomWorks and Fox News. He currently writes for The Political Insider and Headline Politics.