BEREA, Ohio (AP) — Cleveland Browns running back Isaiah Crowell has apologized for posting a drawing on Instagram last week showing a police officer getting his throat slashed.
Crowell posted the drawing after men in Louisiana and Minnesota were shot and killed by police. He subsequently deleted the post, but a screenshot continued to be circulated on social media, prompting his apology Monday.
Five police officers were killed in a sniper attack in Dallas last Thursday night at a protest over the two deaths. Seven other officers and two civilians were wounded.
"Last week was an emotional and difficult week as we saw extreme acts of violence against black men across our country as well as against police officers in Dallas," Crowell said in a statement distributed by the Browns.
"I posted an image to Instagram in the midst of that emotion that I shouldn't have and immediately removed it. It was an extremely poor decision and I apologize for that mistake and for offending people. My values and beliefs do not match that image. I am outraged and upset by the deaths of Alton Sterling and Philando Castile along with so many others. I am also outraged and saddened by the attacks in Dallas and the deaths of the 5 honorable police officers (Lorne Ahrens, Michael Krol, Michael J. Smith, Brent Thompson and Patrick Zamarripa) who were providing protection while trying to keep peace. We have to be better as a society, it's not about color, it's about what's right and wrong. I was very wrong in posting that image. Every single life matters, every death as a result of violence should be treated with equal outrage and penalty."
The Browns were clear about their displeasure with Crowell's post, calling it an "extremely disturbing and unacceptable social media decision" in a statement released later Monday night.
"It was completely inappropriate and we have made him aware of our high level of disappointment," the statement said. "Isaiah has apologized but also knows that just an apology is insufficient and that he must take steps to make a positive difference after a very negative and impactful post."
Crowell had 706 yards rushing and four touchdowns for Cleveland last year. The former Alabama State star has totaled 1,313 yards rushing and 12 TDs in two seasons with the Browns.