Assistant athletic director accuses Black baseball standout of gaining speed by running from police

An employee at a prestigious college preparatory school seems to have forgotten that it's the students who hold all the cards in his business. Tony Humphrey gave him the much-needed reminder when the 16-year-old baseball standout transferred schools during his junior year following what he described as a racist comment from an assistant athletic director at Iona Preparatory in New Rochelle, New York, WPIX-TV reported. “He comes up to me and asked why was I doing track,” Humphrey told the news station of his conversation with the administrator. The teen explained that “it never hurts to gain speed.” The administrator allegedly responded by saying the teen had “gained that speed by running from the police.” Humphrey said he heard the words and thought they were racist. He told his mother about the encounter when he returned home, and they made the decision to transfer Humphrey, who has already committed to play for Boston College, to his local public school, Walter Panas High School. 16yo Tony Humphrey is a HS baseball star. When he joined the track team, the coach told him he “gained his speed by running from police.” This racist comment was absolutely unacceptable! Thankfully, Tony will be taking his talents elsewhere & that coach has resigned. pic.twitter.com/ogMZJFNq0e— Ben Crump (@AttorneyCrump) November 28, 2021 “I decided to leave, because of my current situation, as I’m already committed. I’m already going to [college],” he said. “I don’t feel like I have to stay at a program where they’re going to look at me different.” Humphrey said this isn’t the first time he’s had to deal with racism at the school. ”There was other incidents of racism with my freshman year. I took it up with the deans. I took it up with the higher-ups, and nothing happened to the other student,” Humphrey said. I will be continuing my high school career at HOME! Pumped return to Walter Panas and WILL bring a championship back to Cortlandt. @panas_baseball @lohudinsider @lohudsports @Huds0nAthletics— Tony Humphrey 2023 (@tonyhumphrey_) November 22, 2021 Other students at the school staged a walk-out in support of Humphrey, and the school announced an internal investigation in a letter to parents, WPIX reported. “Such comments go against the very mission of the school to develop moral and ethical leaders,” the school said in the letter. “It is behavior that Iona Preparatory does not condone for its students and will not accept from its faculty and staff.” Although Iona Prep failed to identify the staff member in question, it announced that the employee has resigned. In Pittsford, which is about 340 miles northwest of New Rochelle, students and parents told The New York Times a culture of racism is prevalent in the area. Their allegations were brought to light when a white student was shown on video making a racist threat with a gun on display. “People be like, ‘Why do you carry a gun?’” the boy said in the footage. He answered his question with a racial slur, saying it was to kill Black people. The Monroe County Sheriff’s Office told the newspaper the child hadn't returned to school and has been suspended. “It’s not an isolated incident,” said Tharaha Thavakumar, the mother of a freshman in the Pittsford school district. “It’s something that’s ingrained. And it isn’t going away.” RELATED: Why I refuse to send my children to schools that don't celebrate them *This story has been updated to reflect that Pittsford is northwest of New Rochelle. An earlier version incorrectly identified the city as New Rochester.

Assistant athletic director accuses Black baseball standout of gaining speed by running from police

An employee at a prestigious college preparatory school seems to have forgotten that it's the students who hold all the cards in his business. Tony Humphrey gave him the much-needed reminder when the 16-year-old baseball standout transferred schools during his junior year following what he described as a racist comment from an assistant athletic director at Iona Preparatory in New Rochelle, New York, WPIX-TV reported.

“He comes up to me and asked why was I doing track,” Humphrey told the news station of his conversation with the administrator. The teen explained that “it never hurts to gain speed.” The administrator allegedly responded by saying the teen had “gained that speed by running from the police.”

Humphrey said he heard the words and thought they were racist. He told his mother about the encounter when he returned home, and they made the decision to transfer Humphrey, who has already committed to play for Boston College, to his local public school, Walter Panas High School.

16yo Tony Humphrey is a HS baseball star. When he joined the track team, the coach told him he “gained his speed by running from police.” This racist comment was absolutely unacceptable! Thankfully, Tony will be taking his talents elsewhere & that coach has resigned. pic.twitter.com/ogMZJFNq0e

— Ben Crump (@AttorneyCrump) November 28, 2021

“I decided to leave, because of my current situation, as I’m already committed. I’m already going to [college],” he said. “I don’t feel like I have to stay at a program where they’re going to look at me different.” Humphrey said this isn’t the first time he’s had to deal with racism at the school.

”There was other incidents of racism with my freshman year. I took it up with the deans. I took it up with the higher-ups, and nothing happened to the other student,” Humphrey said.

I will be continuing my high school career at HOME! Pumped return to Walter Panas and WILL bring a championship back to Cortlandt. @panas_baseball @lohudinsider @lohudsports @Huds0nAthletics

— Tony Humphrey 2023 (@tonyhumphrey_) November 22, 2021

Other students at the school staged a walk-out in support of Humphrey, and the school announced an internal investigation in a letter to parents, WPIX reported. “Such comments go against the very mission of the school to develop moral and ethical leaders,” the school said in the letter. “It is behavior that Iona Preparatory does not condone for its students and will not accept from its faculty and staff.” Although Iona Prep failed to identify the staff member in question, it announced that the employee has resigned.

In Pittsford, which is about 340 miles northwest of New Rochelle, students and parents told The New York Times a culture of racism is prevalent in the area. Their allegations were brought to light when a white student was shown on video making a racist threat with a gun on display. “People be like, ‘Why do you carry a gun?’” the boy said in the footage. He answered his question with a racial slur, saying it was to kill Black people.

The Monroe County Sheriff’s Office told the newspaper the child hadn't returned to school and has been suspended. “It’s not an isolated incident,” said Tharaha Thavakumar, the mother of a freshman in the Pittsford school district. “It’s something that’s ingrained. And it isn’t going away.”

RELATED: Why I refuse to send my children to schools that don't celebrate them

*This story has been updated to reflect that Pittsford is northwest of New Rochelle. An earlier version incorrectly identified the city as New Rochester.