Tiger Woods said on Monday he has always respected US law enforcement but that their use of force on George Floyd, the 46-year-old African-American man who died while in police custody, clearly crossed a line.
Derek Chauvin, a 44-year-old white Minneapolis police officer, was arrested on third-degree murder and second-degree manslaughter charges, after cellphone footage showed him kneeling on Floyd's neck.
“I have always had the utmost respect for our law enforcement. They train so diligently to understand how, when and where to use force,” 15-times major champion Woods said in a post on Twitter Monday. “This shocking tragedy clearly crossed that line.”
Numerous prominent athletes, including NBA great Michael Jordan, have spoken out as anti-police brutality marches and rallies boiled over across the country.
"I remember the LA riots and learned that education is the best path forward," said Woods, 44, referring to six days of civil disturbances in 1992 after four white police officers were acquitted of beating African-American man Rodney King.
“We can make our points without burning the very neighborhoods that we live in. I hope that through constructive, honest conversations we can build a safer, unified society,” added Woods, who at 21 became the first black golfer to win the Masters in 1997.
Former world champion boxer Floyd Mayweather has offered to cover the funeral costs for Mr Floyd.
Mayweather Promotions confirmed that the former five-division world champion had reached out to his family with an offer to cover all costs relating to the funeral.
Hollywood Unlocked reported that Mayweather was distraught to learn that the former officer Derek Chauvin was facing the minimal charge, third-degree murder, after video of the incident was widely shared, prompting him to contact the family through a mutual friend.
In a tweet, Mayweather Promotions shared the link to the Hollywood Unlocked story and confirmed its accuracy.
Several stars from the world of sport have sent anti-racism messages as protests following Mr Floyd’s death have taken place over the past week.
On Monday, England striker Marcus Rashford and his Manchester United team-mate Paul Pogba posted messages, while a number of Liverpool players — including the European and World champions' captain Jordan Henderson and Virgil van Dijk, tweeted messages alongside an image of the squad taking a knee on the centre circle at Anfield.