The school board candidate who posted racist remarks on his Facebook page between 2013 and 2016 has removed himself from the race, a statement posted Saturday on Facebook confirmed.
Richard Jankowski, 51, of Williamstown, dropped out of the race for a seat on the Monroe Township Board of Education in Gloucester County after his Facebook posts where he called black people “monkeys,” and “animals,” and advocated that “it’s time to start firing bullets” to kill them, were reported by the New Jersey Globe.
Jankowski’s posts appeared to be his commentary on the Black Lives Matter protests and citizen reaction to, among other things, the 2013 not-guilty verdict for George Zimmerman, who was charged in the killing of Florida teenager Trayvon Martin.
He also referred to the 2014 shooting of Michael Brown in Ferguson, Missouri.
Jankowski announced his withdrawal from the election in a Facebook post to a Williamstown/Monroe Township Facebook group Saturday. The statement was posted by member Shawn Rutter, as Jankowski had deactivated his accounts.
“I want you to know that I wrote those remarks in anger from what I have seen transpire through our country over the years,” the statement said. “I acknowledge this is not an excuse for my actions.”
Jankowski was unable to be reached by NJ Advance Media, and Rutter did not immediately respond to a request for comment.
Monroe Township Board of Education President George Caruso told NJ Advance Media Friday that the statements are “between that gentleman and the rest of the community.”
“He’s not on the school board,” Caruso said.
Jankowski’s withdrawal from the race leaves five candidates vying for three open seats on Nov. 6.