A Georgia deputy just days from retirement claims he was forced off the job after sporting an Afro wig to work.
Antonio Perryman, who served the DeKalb County Sheriff’s Office for two decades, said he was hoping to have a little fun before wrapping up his time with the agency.
“I said, ‘Hey, you know, let me make people happy, you know? Do something a little different,’ ” he told local station WSB-TV. “So … I put on the Afro wig. Neither time I was out there did I not do my job duties.”
The metro Atlanta law enforcement official was just three days shy of celebrating his 20-year retirement and decided to direct traffic outside the courthouse in his the curly wig. Perryman said the get-up earned him plenty of laughs from bystanders, who smiled and took his picture.
“You know, that made me feel a little joyous about that being my last week,” he added.
His superiors were less than happy about it, however.
After finishing his shift last week, Perryman got a call from his supervisor and was forced to resign. Their reasoning? Apparently, his afro wig had sullied the sanctity of his uniform.
Chief [Melody] Maddox “and the sheriff were totally upset over the Afro wig and told me that I disgraced the uniform,” the deputy explained. “When she told me that, I just got numb. Like ‘I’ve disgraced the uniform?’ In my mind, I’m here saying that we got a sheriff running through Piedmont Park from the police like it’s an episode of ‘Cops.’ “
Perryman was referencing a 2017 incident involving his department’s head, DeKalb County Sheriff Jeffrey Mann, who was charged with obstruction and indecency after allegedly exposing himself at a park. Video from the incident showed Mann fleeing police, leading officers on a quarter-mile chase, according to The Atlanta Journal-Constitution.
Mann pleaded guilty to lesser charges, and his state law enforcement certification was revoked. Mann has remained in his post while he appeals his loss of certification.
The same department was rocked by a far bigger scandal in December 2000, when outgoing Sheriff Sidney Dorsey had his political rival Derwin Brown killed weeks after Brown defeated Dorsey in the election for sheriff.
Perryman said he’s “been robbed” of his opportunity to retire with the sheriff’s office and criticized the pressure from superiors to resign. For him, the punishment simply doesn’t fit the crime.
WSB-TV notes that while Perry doesn’t expect to lose any pay over the situation, his records won’t reflect his retirement.
The DeKalb County Sheriff’s Office didn’t return Atlanta Black Star’s requests for comment.
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