A Washington state high school principal who called NBA star Kobe Bryant a “rapist” on social media hours after his death, resigned Friday, the Camas School District superintendent said.
Liza Sejkora, head principal at Camas High School near the Oregon border, posted the comment Jan. 26, the same day Bryant, the retired Los Angeles Lakers player, and eight other people, including his 13-year-old daughter, were killed in a helicopter crash.
That post, since deleted, read: “Not gonna lie. Seems to me that karma caught up with a rapist today.”
Sejkora had been placed on leave after she was criticized for the post. But Superintendent Jeff Snell said in a statement Friday that he accepted her resignation, which he said followed public backlash over a social media post she’d made.
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“This has been a tumultuous week, however, I’ve been impressed with the level of professionalism our staff members have displayed as well as the caring and compassion from our families,” Snell said.
The statement also included a comment from Sejkora. She said she was working with Camas leadership to resign, and she said: “Students and staff deserve to have a learning environment free of disruptions.”
A letter to parents from Snell which was shared with NBC affiliate KGW of Portland, Oregon, which is across the Columbia River from the city of Camas, asked people to rally around Camas High.
“Our students and staff did not ask to be put in this situation,” Snell said in the letter, adding that “they deserve the space to move forward.”
Sejkora had apologized, saying the comment was a “personal, visceral reaction” to reports that Bryant had died.
Bryant was accused of sexually assaulting a 19-year-old hotel employee in Colorado in 2003, an allegation he denied. The athlete, who married his wife, Vanessa Bryant, in 2001, admitted to having sex with the woman but said it was consensual. He was charged with rape, but the case was dropped after the woman declined to testify. A civil suit was settled.
The National Transportation Safety Board said in an investigative update that there were no signs of engine failure in the crash. The cause of the crash is still under investigation.