When social media threats turn to police action

Published: Jul. 11, 2016 at 6:23 AM EDT
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(07/11/16) - Serious threats on social media against white police officers landed some Detroit men in jail. The city's top cop says targeting officers won't be tolerated.

The posts were allegedly made on Facebook over the weekend. One of them said "All lives can't matter until black lives matter. Kill all white cops."

Detroit's Police Chief, James Craig, says although hate speech is protected by the First Amendment, these people are making specific threats toward white officers.

Genesee County Prosecutor, David Leyton, says he's dealt with cases here at home where threats made on social media have led to arrests.

Because of the shootings in Dallas, Leyton is drafting some guidelines for people in the county who take to social media to make threatening posts. Those will be made public in the coming weeks.

He says it's a delicate situation because the First Amendment comes into play.

Craig will now turn the investigation over to prosecutors up to federal level to see if they can make any charges stick.