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NAACP claims ‘no evidence’ of antisemitism at girls HS basketball game

But it did not speak with players from targeted team

A local branch of the New York NAACP claims there is “no evidence” the Roosevelt HS girls basketball team hurled antisemitic taunts at members of a private Jewish school team during a game earlier this month.

The Leffell School girls b-ball team claimed the Roosevelt team had yelled “Free Palestine” and “I support Hamas, you f–king Jew” among other things, and played with “hostility and aggression.”

The Leffell team eventually got fed up and forfeited the game with the fourth quarter left to be played.

Roosevelt coach Bryan Williams and a player from the team eventually were “dismissed” from their positions. According to the New York Post, Williams said he had no idea what transpired during the game — he “personally did not hear any of it on the court.”

“I do not condone what was allegedly done … I do not condone that,” Williams said. He added he believes the investigation into the matter wasn’t conducted “properly.”

The Yonkers branch of the NAACP agrees; it claims there is nothing to back up Leffell’s allegations and says there was a “rush to judgment.”

“We have concluded that there was absolutely no evidence of any antisemitic slurs rendered,” Yonkers NAACP President Frank Coleman said, the Rockland/Westchester Journal News reports.

Coleman also is a substitute teacher at Roosevelt HS and a pastor at a local Baptist church.

ImageColeman (pictured) wrote in The Yonkers Ledger that Leffell’s claims about the game were “unfair” and “untrue,” and that after “reviewing the […] game from beginning to end (one without audio and another with key segments in audio) as well as interviews with parents, students, and the coach, we have concluded that there was absolutely no evidence of any antisemitic slurs rendered.”

Coleman said the NAACP wants an apology from the New York State Governor’s office, the Yonkers Public School District, the Leffell School and its basketball team, and from various public officials and media “that […] intentionally character assassinated and maligned these young [Roosevelt] ladies, their families and the coach.”

Of note, however, is that the NAACP never interviewed anyone from the Leffell School or its girls b-ball team, and its conclusion contradicts the findings of the Yonkers Public Schools.

The district noted on January 19 it “stands by its earlier actions and statements.”

Yonkers Interim Superintendent Luis Rodriguez said the Roosevelt and Leffell teams plan to get together in a “restorative justice circle” before competing again.

MORE: NAACP denounces Amy Coney Barrett for ruling that helped black male students

IMAGE: Maksim Kabakou/Shutterstock.com; National Conservative/X

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About the Author
Associate Editor
Dave has been writing about education, politics, and entertainment for over 20 years, including a stint at the popular media bias site Newsbusters. He is a retired educator with over 25 years of service and is a member of the National Association of Scholars. Dave holds undergraduate and graduate degrees from the University of Delaware.