- The Washington Times - Tuesday, May 23, 2017

A verified Twitter user who describes himself as a freelance writer was disavowed by several news organizations Monday night after he tweeted jokes about Ariana Grande in the immediate aftermath of a terrorist attack at her concert in Manchester, England, that killed 22 people.

David Leavitt, who claims to have written review pieces for CBS, AXS, and Yahoo, tweeted from Boston as the chaos unfolded in Manchester: “MULTIPLE CONFIRMED FATALITIES at Manchester Arena. The last time I listened to Ariana Grande I almost died too,” Mediaite reported.

Monday’s attack, which is being treated as a suicide bombing, was carried out just outside Manchester Arena after Ms. Grande wrapped up her concert Monday night. The blast killed 22 people and injured 59 — many of them reportedly children.

“Honestly, for over a year I thought an Ariana Grande was something you ordered at Starbucks,” Mr. Leavitt tweeted more than a half-hour after the news broke.

He was quickly met with a wave of backlash by celebrities and other verified Twitter users.



“Your friends and family are ashamed of you right now,” wrote “Doctor Who” actor Matt Lucas.

“You, sir, are truly a steaming, gaping a–—e,” wrote celebrity chef Anthony Bourdain.

“It just feels like you’ve had that joke ready to go since the Paris attacks. You are scum, please delete your account,” tweeted “Supernatural” actor Travis Wester.

Mr. Leavitt deleted his initial tweet and responded with a short apology: “Sorry 4 offending. Didn’t realize the magnitude of the tragedy. I always make stupid jokes about whatevers trending. Condolences 2 families.”

But even after his apology, Mr. Leavitt continued to make jokes.

“Imagine if everyone who cursed at me donated a nickel to charity?” he wrote in one tweet.

“And now I have a small insight of what Donald Trump must deal with on a regular basis #ImpeachTrump,” he wrote in another.

CBS News, AXS and Boston CBS affiliate WBZ have disavowed Mr. Leavitt after the comments.

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