City employee fired after noose found in vehicle

Mayor Jorge Elorza talks with reporters. Photo by Steve Klamkin WPRO News

WPRO News and The Associated Press

A Rhode Island city employee has been terminated and another suspended after someone reported finding a noose in a vehicle on a job site.

Providence Mayor Jorge Elorza says that the report is under investigation by the Department of Human Resources and a hearing with union officials is planned.

“What happened is just absolutely despicable and it’s not going to be tolerated here in the city,” said Elorza. “There is no place for it.”

“This is not who we are, and anyone who brings that into our city, we’re going to take swift action against,” Elorza said.

It’s unclear if the vehicle found Monday belonged to the employee or the city.

President of the NAACP Providence Branch James Vincent says he was contacted by a city employee who wanted to make sure the organization was aware the noose was found and had been reported.

Vincent says hearing about the noose brings back the painful history of black people being lynched in the U.S.