WHAT’S BEING CLAIMED:
- The Camas School District of Washington was forced to put a high school principal on leave following her Facebook post that described Kobe Bryant’s death as “karma.”
- Sejkora had since deleted the post and apologized, explaining that it was simply a “personal, visceral reaction” made before receiving “additional information.”
- But after screenshots of Sejkora’s post circulated online, several threats were reportedly made against her, forcing the school to enforce safety measures for their students and staff.
The Camas School District of Washington was forced to put a high school principal on leave Tuesday following her Facebook post that described the death of NBA legend Kobe Bryant as “karma [catching] up with a rapist.”
Camas High School principal Liza Sejkora has since apologized for her “inappropriate and tasteless” remarks.
Sejkora’s post on her private personal Facebook account had read, “Not gonna lie. Seems to me that karma caught up with a rapist today,” and ended with a shrugging emoji.
Her remarks referred to the sexual assault allegations made by a 19-year-old Colorado hotel employee against Kobe in 2003. After months of high-profile hearings, investigations, and leaks about her personal life, his accuser had stopped cooperating, forcing the charges to be dismissed. Kobe had released a statement apologizing and recognizing that the woman did not view their sexual encounter as consensual. He later settled a civil lawsuit with the woman.
Sejkora told KGW8 that she deleted the post after an hour, explaining that it was simply a “visceral reaction” to reports of Kobe’s death made before receiving “additional information.” Later news reports stated that the crash also killed Kobe’s 13-year-old daughter Gianna and seven others — including two other children.
But screenshots of Sejkora’s post had already circulated online and sparked a backlash from the community. Several online threats were reportedly made against her.
While Camas police and district officials determined no “credible evidence” among the threats, an additional police presence is currently monitoring the school.
District Superintendent Jeff Snell explained their decision to put Sejkora on leave in a letter sent to families on Tuesday night: “Our priority is always the safety of our students and staff. In light of threats to (Sejkora) and concern from our community, (Sejkora) has been placed on administrative leave today pending the outcome of our investigation.”
Sejkora also sent a letter of apology to school staff and families.
Sejkora wrote: “You may be aware that a copy of a social media post I made on my personal Facebook page is circulating digitally in our community. Today, I apologized to my staff, and now I apologize to you…
After news broke (about) Kobe Bryant’s death, I made a comment to my private social media, which was a personal, visceral reaction. I want to apologize for suggesting that a person’s death is deserved. It was inappropriate and tasteless. Further, I apologize for the disruption it caused to our learning environment today.”