Another day, another person puts their job in jeopardy with inappropriate social media posts.
This time, it’s a journalist from the Washington Post who is under fire after tweeting a link to a 2016 story about Kobe Bryant’s rape case just hours after news of his death was made public.
Felicia Sonmez, a national political reporter for the Washington Post claims she has received “abuse and death threats” from thousands of people after she tweeted the link to a 2016 Daily Beast story regarding Kobe Bryant’s 2003 rape case.
Backlash from fans of Bryant, who died alongside his 13-year-old daughter and seven other people in a helicopter crash on Sunday, was swift, Sonmez even. claimed to have received death threats after her social media post.
“Well, THAT was eye-opening,” she said.
“To the 10,000 people (literally) who have commented and emailed me with abuse and death threats, please take a moment and read the story – which was written 3+ years ago and not by me.
Sonmez continued with the following justification:
“Any public figure is worth remembering in their totality, even if that public figure is beloved and that totality unsettling. That folks are responding with rage and threats toward me (someone who didn’t even write the piece but found it well-reported) speaks volumes about the pressure people come under to stay silent in these cases.”
The offending tweets have since deleted, however Sonmez landed in a bit of trouble with her job. According to the Washington Post managing editor, Tracy Grant, Felicia Sonmez has been placed on “administrative leave” for her actions.
In a statement to the Independent, Grant notes:
National political reporter Felicia Sonmez was placed under administrative leave while the Post reviews whether tweets about the death of Kobe Bryant violated the Post newsroom’s social media policy.
The tweets displayed poor judgement that undermined the work of her colleagues.
Sonmez is not the first reporter who has disrespected the fallen sports hero, MSNBC reporter Alison Morris also came under fire when she said the n-word while covering the tragic crash.