Philadel­phia sher­iff accused of mis­spending funds and tout­ing AI-gen­er­at­ed news arti­cles

Philadelphia sheriff accused of misspending funds and touting AI-generated news articles

The sher­iff of Philadel­phia was accused on Mon­day of los­ing firearms, spend­ing thou­sands of dol­lars on a new mas­cot design and DJ ser­vices, and trum­pet­ing pos­i­tive but fake news sto­ries pro­duced by a chat­bot.
Sher­iff Rochelle Bilal’s office spent $9,250 on a new mas­cot cos­tume designed around a “Wild West­ern” theme, accord­ing to a Mon­day report by the Philadel­phia Inquir­er, in addi­tion to about $40,000 spent on com­pa­nies to pro­duce brand­ed mer­chan­dise, includ­ing fid­get spin­ners and back­packs, and at least $8,000 on a pro­fes­sion­al DJ.
The sheriff’s depart­ment defend­ed the report in a state­ment on Mon­day, argu­ing the mas­cot, Deputy Sher­iff Jus­tice, “is a com­mu­ni­ty out­reach ini­tia­tive designed to coun­ter­act bul­ly­ing and reach school-age chil­dren in a more com­pre­hen­sive and engag­ing way. It encour­ages them to love them­sel …