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Maryland state employee fired over posts supporting Kenosha shooting suspect

Maryland state employee fired over posts supporting Kenosha shooting suspect
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A Maryland state employee was fired on Saturday over posts on his public Facebook page supporting the Kenosha, Wis., shooting suspect. 

Arthur “Mac” Love IV was terminated from his position as the deputy director of the Governor’s Office of Community Initiatives after posting “divisive images and statements” about the shooting, Steve McAdams, the executive director of the Governor's Office on Community Initiatives, said in a statement obtained by The Hill.

The former state employee posted statements and shared memes backing Kyle Rittenhouse, the 17-year-old charged with homicide after allegedly shooting three protesters in Kenosha, fatally wounding two of them. His Facebook has since been made private or taken down. 

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McAdams said Love was “relieved of his duties” effective immediately. Kevin Craft, administrative director of the Commission on African Affairs, will take on his responsibilities. 

“These divisive images and statements are inconsistent with the mission and core values of the Office of Community Initiatives,” McAdams said.

Maryland Matters first reported Love’s firing on Saturday. 

Shareese Churchill, a spokesperson for Gov. Larry Hogan (R), called the posts “totally inappropriate” in a statement obtained by The Hill. 

“We fully support the immediate actions taken by Director McAdams to address this matter,” she said. 

Love’s posts included a statement that said, “I’m grateful that conservatives are rallying behind this kid. He genuinely seems like a good person.” A different post showed an officer with two thumbs up along with the caption “Don’t be a thug if you can’t take a slug,” according to The Washington Post.

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Love told the Post that he learned he was fired through cable news on Saturday and received an official notice on Sunday. 

His LinkedIn profile indicates he has worked in the office since 2015. 

Kenosha has seen a week of protests after a video circulated showing police shooting Jacob Blake at least seven times in the back as he opened his SUV door. The protests turned deadly Tuesday night.