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White referee suspended after forcing black wrestler to cut his dreadlocks

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White referee suspended after forcing black wrestler to cut his dreadlocks

A New Jersey high school referee was suspended after a video showed a black wrestler being forced to cut his dreadlocks before a bout, after being told he would have to forfeit the match if he refused.

The video, which was uploaded on Twitter on Thursday by a reporter from SNJ Today newspaper, showed Andrew Johnson of Buena Regional High School in Buena, New Jersey, getting his dreadlocks hairstyle cut off by a school official.

Moments later, Johnson won his match against his opponent. A referee named Alan Maloney, who is white, apparently had ordered Johnson to cut off his hair.

The clip went viral on Friday, with many social media users condemning the school for allowing Maloney to make the order, calling it racist and discriminatory.

Larry White, the executive director of the New Jersey State Interscholastic Athletic Association (NJSIAA), said the incident would be investigated by the New Jersey Civil Rights division and the referee would not be assigned to future high school wrestling events in New Jersey until the review is complete.

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