Officer Daniel Ubeda rapidly became an overnight celebrity after his photo went viral on Twitter and Instagram for breaking the law.
Ubeda, a Miami police officer wearing his uniform, with his badge and a gun, was pictured wearing a face mask that supports the reelection of President Donald Trump.
Ubeda donned his Trump mask that read “Trump 2020 no more bullsh*t” while inside the voting location. It is not known if the Trump-backing officer was patrolling the polling location or he came to vote.
The picture of Ubeda was taken by Steve Simeonidis, the chairman of the Miami-Dade Democratic Party.
According to Simeonidis, the police officer was spotted at an early-voting polling location in the Stephen P. Clark Government Center in Miami, Florida.
We are aware of the photograph being circulated of a Miami Police officer wearing a political mask in uniform. This behavior is unacceptable, a violation of departmental policy, and is being addressed immediately. pic.twitter.com/E3eO0IQh0f
— Miami PD (@MiamiPD) October 20, 2020
Simeonidis explained in his tweet: “Here is @CityofMiami Police Officer Daniel Ubeda, in full uniform with badge and gun wearing his Trump mask inside of the polling location in the government center. This is city-funded voter intimidation. Ubeda should be suspended immediately.”
Simeonidis added: “He may have been going to vote. But he was in full uniform with the mask and a gun. That’s voter intimidation.”
Here is @CityofMiami Police Officer Daniel Ubeda, in full uniform with badge and gun wearing his Trump mask inside of the polling location in government center.
This is city funded voter intimidation.
Ubeda should be suspended immediately. pic.twitter.com/TbJxu6mcem
— Steve Simeonidis (@stevesimeonidis) October 20, 2020
Simeonidis claimed that he approached Ubeda and asked him about the mask. The police officer responded by laughing.
A person, who does not find the situation funny, is Miami Police Chief Jorge Colina, who issued a statement saying that the officer will be punished.
Colina stated: “We are aware of the photograph being circulated of a Miami Police officer wearing a political mask in uniform. This behavior is unacceptable, a violation of departmental policy, and is being addressed immediately.”
It is not known what punishment the officer might face.
A skeptic voter had this reaction to the punishment part of the story: “They’ll just give him another week vacation suspension, and then he’ll be right back at it.”
An angry social media user addressed police brutality and made this point: “It’s telling when those that beat you for not complying with their commands or the law don’t obey the law or their departmental policies and supervisors’ commands themselves. This is why many people are afraid of the police. It’s easy. No political speech in uniform. Whatsoever.”
Another commenter said: “It’s not just a violation of departmental policy, it’s against the law for him to be there without the police being called, and it’s against the law to display political slogans and advertising. Two laws are broken by one of your officers. He’d better be fired.”
This is not the first time that the officer has been reprimanded and suspended. Police archives note, “Daniel Ubeda, Police Officer, of his 20-hour suspension, effective July 14, 2011.”