Former Anniston police officer files appeal of firing over hate group affiliation

An Anniston police officer who was fired last month over his membership in an alleged hate group has appealed to the city’s civil service board.

Lt. Josh Doggrell, identified in a post by the Southern Poverty Law Center’s Hatewatch blog as a member ofthe League of the South, was fired June 19.

Another officer, Lt. Wayne Brown, also identified in the blog, decided to retire to avoid “adverse publicity” and “creating a distraction” for the police department, officials said at the time.

Doggrell filed his appeal June 25, according to Civil Service Board Secretary Heather Stephens. There was no further comment. There has been no date set yet for a hearing.

Police officer terminated Anniston City Manager Brian Johnson speaks Friday, June 19, 2015, about an investigation into two police officers linked to a suspected hate group. (William Thornton / wthornton@al.com)

The SPLC identified the League of the South as “neo-confederate,” and posted a video of remarks Doggrell made about the group and his job as a law enforcement officer.

Doggrell had been investigated in 2009 regarding his association with the organization. However, there was no evidence that any of Doggrell’s activity with the LOS had affected his police work, said City Manager Brian Johnson at the time of Doggrell’s firing. He said Doggrell’s personnel file had been “without blemish.”

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