A retired UCLA gymnast, Katelyn Ohashi, has issued a groveling apology after posting “insensitive and thoughtless” photos of herself dressed as Amber Heard “choking” a man in a Johnny Depp costume for Halloween.
In the photos posted earlier this week, 26-year-old Ohashi dressed as Mera, the female superhero played by Heard in ‘Aquaman,’ while a man was dressed as Jack Sparrow, played by Depp in the ‘Pirates of the Caribbean ‘. movie series.
She faced backlash from social media users for making light of domestic violence after the Halloween costume photos went viral.
“I am truly sorry for the decision I made with my Halloween costume/post. It was insensitive and thoughtless,” Ohashi wrote in a post on X, formerly known as Twitter.
The post continues: “As someone who has experienced abuse and spoken out against it, I understand how wrong it was and expect more of myself. I hope you can accept my apology. I’ll get better.’
Katelyn Ohashi, 26, apologized after posting photos of herself dressed as Amber Heard ‘choking’ a man in a Johnny Depp costume for Halloween
The former UCLA gymnast playfully wraps her hands around the neck of the man in the photos
She faced backlash from social media users for making light of domestic violence after the Halloween costume photos went viral
The first photo of Ohashi’s Halloween costume shows the man dressed as Depp standing behind Ohashi, who is dressed as Heard, with the caption: “Rumor has it Johnny Depp and Amber Heard were seen together.”
In the next image, Ohashi playfully wraps her hands around the man’s neck, with the caption “nvm” (never mind).
Ohashi’s Halloween costume references Heard and Depp’s highly publicized divorce, which was accompanied by accusations of domestic violence and defamation.
The live-streamed trial, in which the jury later found that Heard’s allegations of sexual assault and domestic abuse were false and defamed Depp with actual malice, sparked widespread debate on social media.
Many users supported Depp and criticized Heard, fueling debates about domestic violence and feminism.
The jury ruled last year that Heard’s allegations of sexual assault and domestic abuse were false and defamed Depp with actual malice, sparking widespread debate on social media
Ohashi’s Halloween costume references Heard and Depp’s highly publicized divorce, which was accompanied by accusations of domestic violence and defamation
Among those disappointed followers and social media users, many pointed out that Ohashi is known for calling out abuse in gymnastics
Ohashi said she has experienced abuse and has spoken out against it
“It’s a shame because she is one of the most consistent athletes to address abuse in sports, and this shows how little she has actually thought about the subject outside of her direct experiences,” one person wrote.
“She literally studied gender studies in college! There’s no way she doesn’t know better than this!’
Another said: ‘She studied gender studies at UCLA, she’s been through terrible things as a gymnast and yet she’s still okay with this.’
Some users even left comments under one of hers Instagram posts from two weeks ago after she deleted the photos of her Halloween costume.
“Cosplaying as a domestic abuse and rape victim (Amber Heard) for Halloween is neither funny nor cool,” one person wrote.
“Even if you believed Depp was the victim, what made you think he would be cool with his fans dressing up as his ‘abuser’? Would you be cool with your fans dressing up as your abuser for Halloween? You should be ashamed! Very disappointed.’
The former USA Gymnastics team member supported Larry Nassar’s victims, writing in 2016: ‘College gymnastics is the reward we receive after years of abuse’
Ohashi retired after scoring near perfect at the NCAA Women’s Gymnastics National Championship in April 2019
“Have you suddenly gained a conscience and realized that making fun of a victim of both domestic violence and an online smear campaign wasn’t cute or funny?”
Among those disappointed followers and social media users, many pointed out that Ohashi is known for calling out against abuse in gymnastics.
The former USA Gymnastics team member supported the victims of Larry Nassar and wrote in 2016: ‘School gymnastics is the reward we get after years of abuse. It is the time of discovery, healing, learning, growing and having the time of our lives.
Nassar was charged with three counts of criminal sexual abuse in 2016 after sexually abusing at least 265 young women and girls under the guise of medical treatment.
Ohashi took the country by storm after footage of her floor routine – which featured some extremely difficult tricks and complicated choreography – went viral in 2019.
She retired after scoring nearly perfect at the NCAA Women’s Gymnastics National Championship later that year.