COLUMBUS, Miss. -- The Columbus Packet has obtained a copy of a recent Facebook post that has led to the resignation of a decorated Columbus firefighter and the lengthy suspensions of a policeman and two other city firefighters. The men, whom one columnist has dubbed “The Facebook Four” have become the center of a controversy that pits the rights of individual freedom of speech versus the powers of a municipal employer to discipline that speech.
Former Columbus firefighter Brad Alexander made a post on the wall of his personal Facebook page harshly criticizing a Columbus mother after her two-year-old son was struck by a vehicle just South of Eveningside Apartments in the 1300 block of 8th Ave. N. in late August. Tyree Sparks Jr. was struck by a pickup truck around 4 p.m. August 20th after he ran out of the yard where a family friend was watching him on their porch.