On Thursday, ESPN college football announcer Mark Jones posted on Twitter saying he will decline police protection on Saturday when he works the Army and No. 16 Cincinnati game at Nippert Stadium.
Jones said he was concerned for his own safety as the reason he will reject any officer assigned to him.
“Saturday at my football game I’ll tell the police officer on duty to ‘protect’ me he can just take the day off,” Jones tweeted. “I’d rather not have the officer shoot me because he feared for his life because of my Black skin or other dumb ish.”
Jones has worked at ESPN since 1990. The longtime ESPN employee also condemned police in a follow-up tweet around two hours later. Both posts on Twitter received hundreds of reactions and responses.
“Police never saved me. Never helped me. Never protected me, Never taken a bullet for me. (They’ve pulled guns on me). Never kept me safe in a protest. Never stopped the racist from taking my Black Lives Matter flag off my house. I could do without em. fr.,” read Jones’ second post on the issue.
The announcer’s tweets followed a Kentucky grand jury’s decision on Wednesday pertaining to the Breonna Taylor case. The jury indicted only one of the three Louisville police officers involved in the March shooting death of Taylor. Former Louisville detective Brett Hankison was the only officer charged with wanton endangerment.
The grand jury’s decision sparked a backlash across the sports world. Numerous athletes and coaches have spoken out on racial injustice for several months. Additionally, many expressed disappointment in the verdicts as protests continue in Louisville.
[H/T USA Today]