Female police officer quits the force over allegations she was bullied by her colleagues when they learned her AFL player boyfriend was Aboriginal
- Gabriella Capponi claims she was bullied while working in South Australia Police
- She said she was the victim of racial remarks because her partner is Aboriginal
- Capponi claims her colleagues harassed her over a six-month period this year
- She resigned in November and plans to file workplace claim against police force
A female police officer has quit after she was allegedly repeatedly bullied and harassed by her colleagues for having an Aboriginal boyfriend.
Gabriella Capponi resigned from the South Australia Police Force earlier this month claiming she was targeted with racist comments about her partner over a six-month period, starting in January.
In the wake of the alleged bullying, Ms Capponi said she was left battling severe anxiety and post-traumatic stress disorder.
She is now planning to file a workplace claim against the force.
A former South Australian police officer has quit the force amid claims she was the victim of bullying and harassment (file image)
‘I got scared going into work, worrying about what comments would be next,’ Ms Capponi told The Advertiser.
She said one colleague asked if her partner had a job or if he ‘just steals cars for a living’.
Ms Capponi filed a bullying and harassment report in April after a colleague asked if she was ‘receiving benefits’ because she was living with her partner.
‘I’d hear them making comments like ‘just another David’. I asked what it meant and they said ‘Get it? David Boon. Rhymes with coon’,’ she said.
Ms Capponi contacted South Australia Police’s Aboriginal Policy Officer and was told to write up a report.
She was removed from a special operation team after the report and returned to her previous role in the state tactical response team.
Ms Capponi said her request to be transferred to another branch was rejected and she went on stress leave before resigning on November 12.
The former policewoman said she was scared to come forward.
‘It’s really hard to stand up for yourself in the police because … the culture is if you’re the one who stands up and says something then you’re the one that then becomes the target,’ she said.
Her boyfriend Anthony Wilson was drafted into the AFL by the Adelaide Crows in 2014.
Ms Capponi said their relationship has been strained in the wake of the alleged bullying.
Gabriella Capponi quit the force in November, claiming she received racial remarks about her boyfriend being an Aboriginal (file image)
A spokesperson for South Australia Police said they were supporting Ms Capponi.
‘SAPOL have a program of Cultural Awareness training for all staff, and SAPOL’s Diversity & Inclusion Branch have worked with personnel specifically around indigenous cultural understanding,’ the spokesperson told Daily Mail Australia.
‘SAPOL has provided ongoing support to Miss Capponi over an extended period of time.
‘SAPOL have no further comment to make on this matter.’
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