The Los Angeles Police Department announced Saturday it has stopped purchasing online advertising from Google after a recruitment ad appeared on a website that has drawn criticism for its content.
The ad appeared Friday night on breitbart.com and showed an LAPD uniformed officer and the words "CHOOSE your FUTURE LAPD IS HIRING!"
"LAPD did NOT purchase or otherwise acquire ad space on that website," LAPD Chief Michel Moore tweeted Saturday morning. "Senior leadership at LA City Personnel Department also relayed they did not authorize or pay for this ad either."
The department announced later Saturday in a tweet on @joinlapd, its Twitter account intended for recruitment purposes, "We have stopped these Google Ads altogether while we reexamine our ad filters and take all necessary steps to ensure tighter control of ad settings."
A tweet from the department Friday described breitbart.com as "a website that creates a negative juxtaposition to our core values."
Critics have accused the conservative-leaning Breitbart of running some content they deem to be racially and sexist-tinged, a charge operators of the influential site deny.
Elizabeth Moore of Breitbart issued a statement to the Los Angeles Times describing the company as "one of the most pro-police, pro-law-enforcement news organizations in America."
"We have been cited by the New York Times Magazine as having one of the most diverse newsrooms in the nation, with a history of promoting women and minorities into leadership positions," the statement said. "We also know we have strong readership among the rank-and-file in the LAPD."
Advertisements purchased from Google often end up on websites the organization making the purchase does not know about in advance.