The Ohio Civil Rights Commission is alleging the Columbus Police Department moved slowly to investigate charges of racist behavior by a white officer.
The commission has accused the department of "unlawful discriminatory practices" for failing to act quickly on complaints by officers about the behavior.
An internal police department investigation and a finding by the civil rights commission determined a veteran sergeant called black officers racially charged names.
The commission also says the sergeant once talked of killing black officers.
The officer was suspended in October and received a written reprimand in May. The paper says he denied the charges during the internal investigation.
A Columbus police spokesman declined to comment with the commission charges pending.