Referee Fired After Forcing Wrestler to Cut Dreadlocks

Alan Maloney has been let go by the school district.

black hairstyle discrimination
Wrestler Andrew Johnson had his dreadlocks cut in order to continue competing. (Mike Frankel/Twitter)

The white referee who forced a black high school wrestler to either cut of his dreadlocks or forfeit his match has been fired.

Alan Maloney will no longer work in the Buena Regional School District, by order of a New Jersey superintendent, Good Morning America reported. The decision was made after an emergency school board meeting was called this week to discuss “personnel matters,” according to a notice posted on the school district’s website. The notice also said that “Action may be taken.”

“He’s done working with our district,” Superintendent David Cappuccio said at the meeting, referring to Maloney. The referee had already been suspended indefinitely since video of the incident went viral on social media, outraging thousands.

The family of wrestler Andrew Johnson did not speak at the meeting, but their attorney said the student-athlete was “emotionally drained” by the incident, according to GMA. They intend to let investigations play out before taking any possible legal action themselves.

“In collaboration with the NJSIAA [New Jersey State Interscholastic Athletic Association] and its ongoing investigation in this matter, the district will take appropriate action as more details become available,” Cappuccio wrote in a statement.

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