An Idaho marshal’s deputy could lose his job for filming a video that jeered at LeBron James for his commentary against the Ohio police officer who fatally shot a knife-wielding teen attacker.
Deputy Nate Silvester posted a viral TikTok video of himself sitting in a squad car during an imaginary disturbance call where a Black man tries to stab another Black man with a knife. In the video, Silvester asks fake LeBron James how he should respond over the phone and mock James advises Silvester not to intervene.
“So you don’t care if a black person kills another black person, but you do care if a white cop kills a black person, even if he’s doing it to save the life of another black person?” Silvester responds in the video. “I mean it doesn’t make a whole lot of sense, but then again you are really good at basketball, so I guess I’ll take your word for it.”
— GuidoFawkes (@GuidoFawkes1976) April 24, 2021
A formal complaint was filed against the deputy by a Bellevue citizen on Tuesday, and the marshal’s office where he works does not have Silvester’s back.
“The Bellevue Marshal’s Office is aware of the extreme controversy regarding Deputy Marshal Silvester’s viral TikTok. The statements made do NOT represent the Bellevue Marshal’s Office,” they said in a statement on Facebook. “The Bellevue Marshal’s Office always demands that our Deputies engage with our citizens in a friendly and professional manner. This is NOT how we expect our Deputies to act on duty or use city time. This is a personnel issue that is being dealt with internally.”
According to a GoFundMe page, reportedly set up by a friend, Silvester has since been suspended without pay. “He’s still got his job for now, but apparently the town where he polices didn’t find his TikTok as amazingly comical, and accurate as the 4.5 million viewers did, including some major news networks,” the page reads. “The future is uncertain. I just don’t want to see my friend lose out on any money for this when it was meant to be satirical and to point out an obvious flaw in Lebron’s logic.”
The GoFundMe page has since raised nearly $100,000.