A Washington state high school wrestling coach has been fired for mocking the murder of George Floyd by a white Minneapolis police officer.
Dave Hollenbeck, the first-year coach at Bethel High School posted a photo of himself on the floor, with a knee to the back of his neck as he smiles. The photo was similar to the images seen in the viral video of Floyd being pinned down by a white Minneapolis cop on Monday before he died.
“Not dead yet I’m doing this for our police officers the media is a race baiting machine and I’m tired of it,” Hollenbeck wrote on Facebook. “I’m going to speak out every time if you don’t like that I’m sorry but I love All people.. Wake up America.”
In another post, Hollenbeck wrote, “This is for all the race baiters and people that don’t What they’re talking about when they’re saying this could kill you.”
The posts have since been deleted.
In a statement released by Bethel School District, they confirmed Dave Hollenbeck has been fired for his insensitive post.
“We have completed our investigation. Dave Hollenbeck is no longer employed by the Bethel School District. His behavior was not consistent with our equity initiatives and nondiscrimination policies,” said district spokesman Doug Boyles.
Hollenbeck later defended his post in an interview with KIRO 7.
“I did not tell any lies; I showed that I was OK from a knee on my neck. That is it,” Hollenbeck said. “I did not say anything racist and maybe it was insensitive at the time.”