The Flash actor Hartley Sawyer fired after tweets about mutilating women, being racist resurface

The Flash actor Hartley Sawyer fired after tweets about mutilating women, being racist resurface
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Actor Hartley Sawyer has been fired from his role on US superhero drama The Flash after some of his racist, misogynistic and homophobic tweets resurfaced.  

Sawyer's Twitter account has been deleted, but the content - dated between 2012 - 2014 - has been captured via screenshots and shared online. 

In one particularly shocking tweet posted in 2012, Hartley writes: "As a lad, one of my favourite activities was kidnapping homeless women and cutting off their breasts." 

In the same year, the now 35-year-old actor wrote: "If I had a wife I would beat the hell out of her tonight lol". 

Another of Sawyer's tweets reads: "The only thing keeping me from doing mildly racist tweets is the knowledge that Al Sharpton would never stop complaining about me."

He also used multiple homophobic slurs. 

The CW, the television network behind The Flash, confirmed the news in a statement condemning Sawyer's comments. 

"We do not tolerate derogatory remarks that target any race, ethnicity, national origin, gender, or sexual orientation," the statement read. 

"Such remarks are antithetical to our values and polices, which strive and evolve to promote a safe, inclusive and productive environment for our workforce."

Showrunner Eric Wallace also tweeted a statement in which he said Sawyer's tweets "broke his heart and made him mad as hell", adding that he felt the comments were indicative of a larger problem in the US. 

Sawyer himself issued a lengthy apology, calling his tweets a "horrible attempt to get attention at the time".

"My words, irrelevant of being meant with an intent of humour, were hurtful, and unacceptable... I regret them deeply," he wrote on Instagram. 

"This was not acceptable behavior. These were words I threw out at the time with no thought or recognition of the harm my words could do, and now have done today.

"I am incredibly sorry, ashamed and disappointed in myself for my ignorance back then. I want to be very clear: this is not reflective of what I think or who I am now."