Kansas City, MO – Kansas City Chiefs quarterback Patrick Mahomes has become the target of backlash after critics accused him of defending George Zimmerman in a series of old tweets.
Zimmerman was a neighborhood watch leader who fatally shot 17-year-old Trayvon Martin on Feb. 26, 2012, but was acquitted using in a 2013 jury trial.
Martin was visiting his father in Sanford when he encountered Zimmerman, who told police he was out patrolling the neighborhood when he encountered the teen, the Miami Herald reported.
Zimmerman had reported Martin to police and was following him before the two engaged in a physical altercation that ended when the 28-year-old Zimmerman fatally shot the teen.
Prosecutors called it an unjustified shooting of a teenager eating Skittles and Zimmerman claimed it was self-defense, according to the Miami Herald.
Mahomes’ tweets resurfaced just prior to the AFC Championship game on Jan. 19, FOX News reported.
One post dated back to 2011 – long before the shooting even took place. In that tweet, he suggested that people shouldn’t assault police or resist arrest
“Stop resisting or assaulting a cop,” that message read, according to the Miami Herald.
Another post was made in response to someone who referred to the Zimmerman case as “an absolute tragedy.”
“No one knows what actually happens which is why he is not guilty but a crime could have occurred,” Mahomes wrote.
In one thread, Mahomes seemed to defend Martin while discussing the case with a former teammate.
“There was no reason for Zimmerman to follow him and Trayvon just defended himself and Zimmerman had a [gun] so he shot him,” the quarterback opined.
His tweets on the shooting don’t actually appear to support Zimmerman at all, but that didn’t stop Twitter users from blasting him.
Mahomes and the Kansas City Chiefs will go head-to-head against the San Francisco 49ers in Super Bowl LIV on Feb. 2.