Valerie Hoff, a veteran reporter with Atlanta’s 11Alive news, resigned over the weekend after trying to get the scoop on a video of a white cop punching a black man turned into her using the n-word in conversation with the man who posted the video to social media.
On April 13, Curtis Rivers posted a video of a black man getting punched by a police officer to his Twitter timeline. Hoff, who came across the video, tried to get permission from Rivers to post it; shortly afterward, Rivers tweeted that “news nig-as” were trying to use his video.
Hoff decided to slide into Rivers’ direct messages and sent him the following message, “Please call this news nig-a,” referring to herself. Hoff then asked Rivers where he got the video, and he replied with a “LMFAO” and then stated that he got the video from a group chat. But it was then that he noticed that Hoff was a white woman. “I just looked through your photos and realized you aren’t black but you called me a nig-a.”
Hoff then tried to state that she had called herself one and tried to apologize and said that the man in the video needed justice, but it was a little too late.
“How would I be able to contact your manager or lawyer?” Rivers asked.
And that was the end of Hoff’s career at WXIA. On Saturday, she resigned.
“I was quoting something the gentleman said in a public tweet back to him in a private message, but that doesn’t make it any less offensive,” Hoff told the Atlanta Journal-Constitution. “It was incredibly stupid and reckless. I was in the middle of a pressure-filled day trying to chase down the video of a man being beaten and kicked by two Gwinnett police officers, which this particular gentleman had posted on Twitter. I repeatedly apologized and continue to do so. I also offered to resign immediately.”
Hoff now plans to be a stay-at-home mom and work on her food blog.