Gadsden County Commissioner Jeffery Moore resigned last week after an alleged photo of him dressed as a klansman at a Halloween party surfaced in the community, the Tallahassee Democrat reported on Tuesday.
Gadsden County Sheriff Morris Young told Politico multiple individuals told him the photo, which depicts a man at a party excitedly waving his arms for the camera while wearing the white robes and pointy hood of a KKK member, was Moore in his younger years. The other partygoers in the photo have had their faces scratched out of the image. Young indicated that he approached Moore about the photo, who “never denied at all” and told him it was a costume. He “refuted nothing when I showed him the pictures,” Young said, he then indicated to Moore that he “thought he needed to resign.”
A DeSantis appointee, Moore only served on the board for around two months, having been appointed in July and becoming the only white member of the board. The former Department of Revenue official also served as the only Republican on the five-person Gadsden county board, the only predominantly Black county in Florida.
Residents of the county expressed outrage over the photo, demanding that Moore and the Florida state government clarify if it was truly Moore depicted wearing the racist garb. “People are upset,” Brenda Holt, the Gadsden County Commissioner, told the Tallahassee Democrat. “I don’t know the history of that photo, but I do know that people depend on us in politics to do better. I’m concerned about young people seeing this.”
Neither Moore nor DeSantis’ office have addressed the photo, both indicating that they were in the middle of preparations for Hurricane Ian and not available to comment. In his resignation letter, addressed to the Florida governor, Moore indicated he was not able to continue serving in his post for “personal reason,” and has refused to directly address if the photo spurred his resignation. Additionally, Moore suspended his campaign for the District 2 County Commissioner general election.