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Cop Who Mocked LeBron James On TikTok Signs Book Deal, Sets Up Foundation To Help Police

Bellevue, ID – The Bellevue deputy marshal who was suspended without pay for mocking NBA star LeBron James in a now-viral TikTok video just landed a book deal and is establishing a foundation to help support law enforcement officers.

Belleview Deputy Marshal Nate Silvester said the ability to establish the foundation was made possible by generous donations to his Go Fund Me campaign, which has raised over $510,000 so far.

The veteran officer said he is also earmarking a portion of the funds to give to the First Responders Children’s Foundation.

He revealed Wednesday that he recently signed a deal with Di Angelo Publications to write a book titled “Never Off Duty,” KTVB reported.

Deputy Marshal Silvester was placed on unpaid leave for one week as a result of the TikTok video.

He returned to work on Thursday, KTVB reported.

Deputy Marshal Silvester posted the footage to the video-sharing app on April 22, just one day after the Los Angeles Lakers star posted a still photo of the Columbus police officer who fatally shot 16-year-old Ma’Khia Bryant as she was trying to stab another girl, the Idaho Mountain Express reported.

The Columbus Division of Police has since identified the officer as Officer Nicholas Reardon, according to WBNS.

James captioned the picture of Officer Reardon – “YOU’RE NEXT” – followed by an hourglass that implied a countdown, and the hashtag “#ACCOUNTABILITY.”

The since-deleted tweet sparked immediate outrage on social media, including from a number of professional athletes.

Deputy Marshal Silvester was one of many law enforcement officers who posted short video clips showing themselves pretending to reach out to the NBA star for advice on how to handle an array of urgent situations.

“Dispatch, I’ve arrived at that disturbance,” the deputy marshal said as he sat in his patrol vehicle with his radio in his hand. “Can you have LeBron call my cell phone right away please? Thank you.”

Deputy Marshal Silvester then rolled down his window and reservedly asked someone outside to put down a weapon.

“Excuse me, sir. Excuse me. No, can you put the knife down please sir?” he asked. “No, sir – don’t stab him. No, stop stabbing – oh hold on. Hold on, it’s LeBron.”

The deputy marshal then focused his attention on his pretend cell phone call with James.

“Yeah, it’s me again,” he told the NBA star. “Listen, I’m out here at this disturbance call and there’s a guy trying to stab another guy with a knife. What do you think I should do?”

Deputy Marshal Silvester then acted as if James asked him what color skin the individuals had.

“Why does that matter?” he asked. “Well, okay, they’re both black.”

Deputy Marshal Silvester noted that deadly force would be completely justified due to the fact that the suspect was actively trying to stab the victim, then paused as if he was listening to instructions from the other end of the line.

“I see. So, you don’t care if a black person kills another black person, but you do care if a white cop kills a black person, even if he’s doing it to save the life of another black person?” he asked.

“I mean, it doesn’t make a whole lot of sense, but then again, you are really good at basketball, so I guess I’ll take your word for it,” the deputy marshal said. “Alright, thanks LeBron.”

He then waved out his window and told the pretend suspect and victim that they were on their own.

“Good luck!” he said.

The video has been viewed more than 5.7 million times so far.

The Bellevue Marshal’s Office acknowledged the “extreme controversy” surrounding the video in a Facebook post on April 27.

“The statements made do NOT represent the Bellevue Marshal’s Office,” the post read. “The Bellevue Marshal’s Office always demands that our Deputies engage with our citizens in a friendly and professional manner. This is NOT how we expect our Deputies to act on duty or use city time.”

The agency said the matter was a “personnel issue” and would be handled internally.

“We would like to thank everyone that took the time to reach out to us,” the post read. “We greatly value our relationship within our wonderful community.”

Deputy Marshal Silvester was subsequently suspended without pay for one week.

“So far I still have a job, I am supposed to return to work tomorrow,” Silvester said during an interview on Wednesday, according to East Idaho News. “They did want to fire me, but lucky for me I have a very common-sense, loyal marshal who went to bat for me…The suspension wasn’t great, but I still have a job, so that’s good.”

Written by
Holly Matkin

Holly is a former probation and parole officer who is married to a sheriff’s deputy. She is a regular contributor to Signature Montana magazine, and has written feature articles for Distinctly Montana magazine.

View all articles
Written by Holly Matkin

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