Olive Branch, Mississippi. Nov 6th, 2018. pic.twitter.com/UN4vzu8tK2
— smokeySr🐶🐶🐶 (@smokeydaQue1212) November 7, 2018
A Mississippi man pictured wearing a Confederate flag shirt with a noose and the words “Mississippi Justice” on it has been fired, according to his now-former employer Regional One Health.
“On November 7, 2018, we became aware of a photo circulating on social media of an individual identified online as an employee of Regional One Health,” said a statement obtained by NBC-2. “We understand and appreciate the intense feelings related to this situation, but it is our duty to perform a thorough due diligence to verify the truth. As of today, November 8, 2018, we have completed our investigation and what we learned led to the termination of the employee in question. Regional One Health holds employees to a high standard. We are committed to upholding our mission to provide compassionate care and exceptional services to all. This includes fostering a safe and protected work and care environment for all. Behaviors contrary to these principles are unacceptable and will not be tolerated.”
The picture first went viral in a now-deleted Facebook post from a man identified as Rashaud, according to BuzzFeed. He said he mistakenly believed at first that this person in the Confederate Flag shirt was a poll worker.
Election Commissioner Barry Chatham told Local Memphis that this man was not a poll worker.
“As far as I can tell the guy wearing the t-shirt wasn’t violating the law,” he said, and added, “We don’t have a law against wearing his expression.” He claimed that the picture taker broke the law by bringing a cell phone into the polling place.
“It’s crazy — they try to say the rebel flag is not racist, but to have a noose on the rebel flag, it’s like, what are you trying to say?” Rashaud said. “It just shocks me that people feel it’s OK to come out in public like this. I was just kind of shook up.”
The man has been identified as former cop Clayton Hickey, according to WREG3. No one answered the door when the outlet arrived at his home. He reportedly resigned from the Memphis Police Department after he was allegedly caught in a vehicle with alcohol and 17-year-old girl.
[Image via Scott Olson/Getty Images]