Several of the comments advocated violence, including against Chief Justice of the United States John G. Roberts Jr. for allowing the dismissal of a case seeking to overturn the results of the presidential election.
“I find them very despicable, and that’s why I took the action that I took,” Hill (R) said about the comments in a brief interview. “I certainly don’t approve of that, and, of course, it’s against our policy.”
The deputy, Aaron Hoffman, said in an interview with The Washington Post that he did not post those comments, saying the account he had recently opened on Parler, a social media website that has become a favorite among conservatives, was hacked.
“I did not make those posts,” Hoffman said. “I’m trying to figure out who did.”
The announcement of the investigation and firing came shortly after a string of tweets on Friday showing screenshots of comments allegedly made by Hoffman on Parler.
In response to an article questioning the Supreme Court’s dismissal in the election lawsuit brought by Texas and several other states, the account suggested that Roberts’s life “needs to be shortened.”
Another post expressed opposition to a D.C. bill that would allow some children to be vaccinated without parental consent.
“I will kill anyone that touches my children without my consent,” the post read. “Not a threat, but a promise.”
Hoffman, who has been employed by the county sheriff’s office for 15 years, said he closed the Parler account after he noticed suspicious activity on his email.
He disavowed the hateful messages attributed to him and said he plans to consult with attorneys about his firing and the social media account.
“I do understand the community’s concern,” Hoffman said. “I’ve been a public servant for over 15 years, and I take that very seriously. I am in no way a threat to the public. This disturbs me as well.”