LOS ANGELES (AP) — A Los Angeles County sheriff's commander has been disciplined for having a ringtone with a mock Asian voice and for comments he made after his personal cellphone rang during a meeting with top brass.
The Los Angeles Times says a colleague reported that Cmdr. Paul Pietrantoni's ringtone was "The Oriental Riff" accompanied by a stereotypical Asian voice saying: "Hello, you pick up phone, you pick up phone."
After the phone went off at a meeting with supervisors, Pietrantoni reportedly said, "Oh, that must be Mr. Tanaka calling me," referring to Paul Tanaka, the department's then-second in command, who is Japanese-American.
Pietrantoni was issued a verbal reprimand.
He defended his conduct to the Times, saying the ringtone had been put on his phone by his daughter's fiance, who is Asian-American.