A retired professional wrestler was banned from a Los Angeles wrestling convention after he allegedly lobbed hateful and transphobic insults at a trans wrestler signing autographs for fans over the weekend.
Robert Rechsteiner — known as Rick Steiner in the ring — was prohibited from attending the rest of the three-day event called WrestleCon following the demeaning tirade against professional wrestler Gisele Shaw.
Shaw accused Steiner of yelling “you’re a piece of trash,” “you are filth” and “get the f–k away from here” at her as she walked over to a table to meet with fans.
“I was shocked and could not believe that this was even happening,” she wrote in a statement posted to Twitter on Saturday. “To have someone saying those comments who a lot of people look up to and consider their hero was quite shocking and disheartening.”
Steiner, 62, was a eight-time World Tag Team Champion during his tenure with World Championship Wrestling.
He also has served as a Georgia school board member for the Cherokee County Board of Education since 2006.
WrestleCon organizers issued a public apology to Shaw following the alleged tirade.
“WrestleCon regrets the events that took place at yesterday’s convention and apologizes to Gisele Shaw … We aim to promote a safe and inclusive environment for all LGBTQAI+ members of the wrestling community,” the organizers said Sunday. “The issue has been addressed and we hope the remainder of the convention can be a positive experience for all.”
Shaw said she has been bullied her whole life, but is no longer afraid to speak out.
“I am not writing this because I want sympathy. I am writing this because I am done being bullied to silence,” she said in the statement Saturday. “Today is International Transgender Day of Visibility and I am standing up for myself and for other people who go through the exact same situation on a daily basis.”
She also said behavior like Steiner’s cannot be tolerated.
“I want everyone to know what kind of a deplorable person Rick Steiner is.”
The ex-wrestler could not immediately be reached for comment Tuesday.
With Post wires
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