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August 18, 2018

Gloucester County school board candidate withdraws from election after racist Facebook posts revealed

Rick Jankowski issued a statement apologizing for his racist comments on Saturday

Investigations Racism
Rick Jankowski Rick Jankowski for Monroe BOE/Facebook

Rick Jankowski's profile picture from his campaign Facebook page.

The South Jersey school board candidate who was found to have made a series of racist Facebook posts has withdrawn from the upcoming election.

Rick Jankowski was running for a seat on the Monroe Township Board of Education. The New Jersey Globe posted a story Wednesday highlighting a series of racist comments and posts from Jankowski’s personal Facebook page, made between 2013 and 2016.

In one of the posts, Jankowski called black people in Baltimore “f***ing monkeys” for protesting Freddie Gray’s murder in 2015.

Jankowski issued a statement Saturday morning on the Monroe Township Schools Forum's Facebook page apologizing for his comments and withdrawing from the race.

Here’s the full statement:

“I’m sorry. There isn’t much more than I can say except for that. I would like to extend my heartfelt apologies to those that I have offended and to those who have supported me in my endeavors. Regarding the remarks that were recently published, I want you to know that I wrote those remarks in anger from what I have seen transpire through our country over the years. I acknowledge this is not an excuse for my actions. I know many will say I am apologizing because those remarks surfaced and I assure you this is not the case. I could have deleted the posts or made my page private, but I didn’t because that’s not who I am. However, after re-reading my posts, I now realize the impact and hurt it has caused for so many in our community.

"I submitted a letter to the Board of Elections requesting that I be withdrawn from the school board election.

"Should you continue to be angry with my actions, I respectfully request that you please fuel your anger at me and not my family, friends, or those who have supported me. They do not deserve the hatred because of my words.

"I had hoped to make changes to better our town but instead I put us in the headlines once again, and for the wrong reasons. Again, for that I am truly sorry. I know how most will judge me, but my intent was always to help the children, staff, and residents of Monroe Township without expecting anything in return. I only hope that my apology will outweigh my words, which I will always regret.

"I appreciate your time for reading this apology and wish you only the best.”

Jankowski’s personal and campaign Facebook pages have been deactivated.

The New Jersey Globe is a political news web site whose editor is David Wildstein, a central figure in the Bridgegate political scandal that damaged the political standing of then-Gov. Chris Christie.

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