A Reddit user who took credit for creating the GIF that showed U.S. President Donald Trump tackling someone with the CNN logo superimposed on his face has apologized for his actions and apparently deleted his account.
The user, known as “HanA**holeSolo,” said on Reddit that he was the one who created the GIF using a clip from Trump’s appearance at Wrestlemania XXIII, that showed him beating up WWE CEO Vince McMahon with the CNN logo covering his face.
Trump himself shared the GIF on Twitter Sunday:
“HanA**holeSolo” initially wrote on Reddit that he was “honoured” that the “MAGA EMPORER” (sic) had shared the GIF, CNN reported Tuesday.
It later emerged that the user had posted a series of offensive remarks about black Americans, Jews and Muslims, according to Business Insider.
Those posts have reportedly been deleted.
But “HanA**holeSolo” later issued an apology for his posts on Reddit — after CNN managed to track him down.
The cable news outlet found “HanA**holeSolo” after it discovered “identifying information” on Reddit and found his name through a Facebook search before verifying details that confirmed who he was.
CNN tried to contact him on Monday but he didn’t respond.
The user subsequently posted an apology on the subreddit r/The_Donald, which was later deleted.
BuzzFeed editor Brandon Wall posted the apology on Twitter:
“HanA**holeSolo” also apologized for making posts that were “racist, bigoted and anti-Semitic.
“I am in no way this kind of person. I love and accept people of all walks of life and have done so for my entire life.”
On Tuesday, the user’s account also appeared to have been deleted altogether.
A search for “reddit.com/u/HanA**holeSolo” yielded the following screen:
The Reddit user eventually contacted CNN and asked not to be identified. The network agreed, noting his “extensive statement of apology” and his pledge that he wouldn’t repeat any such posts on social media in the future.
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In his apology on Reddit, “HanA**holeSolo” said the GIF was “not meant to be a call to violence against CNN or any other news affiliation.
“I had no idea anyone would take it and put sound to it and then have it put up on the president’s Twitter feed.
“The Internet and social media is capable of many great things, and this is an example of the not so great things that it can do.”