KANSAS CITY, Mo. - Once something is posted online, chances are it never really goes away, and that is the case in one recent incident about a Kansas GOP volunteer.
A tweet sent by @GavinGOP on July 1 has since been deleted, but there are screen shots obtained by RTV6 sister station 41 Action News.
It read: "Offending Muslims is the duty of any civilized person. Especially with a .45."
This was in response to another tweet, but a local interfaith leader, Ahsan Latif, saw it as a threat. He educates the public on Muslim culture and advocates for peace.
"My goal as the president of this organization, and as the board, is to let people know who we are and let them know we exist and are happy members of this country," Latif said. "I was really disturbed to see that someone in the role who is named "GavinGOP" who has a role in the Republican Party would say something like that."
We wanted to find out who this @GavinGOP was and found him online first.
Gavin Ellzey is listed on the Kansas GOP website as the current 3rd District Vice-Chair. 41 Action News crews spent the day emailing and calling him and even went to his job and home. We didn’t get any answers.
The Kansas Republican Party Executive Director Clay Barker did send us this statement that reads:
"The Kansas Republican Party has no responsibility for or connection to the public statements of private citizens who perform occasional volunteer work for the Party. The Republican Party in no way shares Mr. Ellzey's sentiment."
After more digging, we also found Ellzey was the communications director for the Johnson County Republican Party for two years. In 2012, he was asked to step down.
Although all of these positions were strictly volunteer, Latif believes it's still a bad image to spread for anyone in leadership.
"This is something that is published by a respected member of that community, the GOP, who has found himself in a leadership position and if he is advocating for violence against Muslims, it really, really makes me wonder what could happen," Latif said.
As of now, the Twitter account for @GavinGOP no longer exists.
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