BOULDER, Colo. -- One of the members included in a racist Facebook Messenger group called the "4th Reich Official Group Chat" spoke out Thursday after his expulsion from Boulder Preparatory High School.
Sage Reynolds, 18, is one of more than a dozen students of local high schools and one college who were involved in the Nazi-inspired chat group. Each was named in a recent Boulder Police Department report. None were charged with a crime.
Despite the fact that none were charged with a crime, Reynolds, along with at least four other students, were expelled from their respective schools. Reynolds attended Boulder Prep, along with at least three others who were expelled.
Reynolds takes issue with his expulsion, telling Denver7 he did not participate much in the group chat. Indeed, in records obtained by Denver7, police say Reynolds only posted one message to the group chat.
"We must obey our annukaki (sic) overlords," Reynolds wrote, but explained to Denver7 he intended the line as a joke, based on a popular alien conspiracy theory.
Reynolds is mentioned one other time, by a student who said he will be promoted to "SS-Untersturmfuhrer" because he is "arian (sic)." The author likely intended to write Aryan, which is a racial reference frequently nodded to by the Nazi party, as they valued blonde hair and blue eyes.
To Reynolds, the entire group was a joke, but his singular message certainly intended no malice.
"It was not anything (serious), none of the kids were planning on carrying out anything violent in nature, it was just a bad joke," he told Denver7.
Reynolds admits it wasn't a topic to joke about, but said he didn't ask to be included in the group. The group's leader invited him, he wrote one message, then he said it turned ugly.
"I said something like a conspiracy theory as like a joke, you know, going along with the joke, and then they just started saying a bunch of heinous things," Reynolds said.
Other messages posted by students in the group included references like, "WHITE POWER," and "DEATH TO ALL JEWS AND NI****S."
That's when Reynolds said he turned the group chat off -- he said he didn't revisit the chat.
As he didn't ask to be in the group and only posted once, he said he doesn't believe he deserves to be expelled -- especially so close to his graduation.
Boulder Preparatory High School, although officials haven't released comment directly, told Boulder Police they expelled the students involved due to general fear in the school district.
One student involved in the group committed suicide, helping to spark the investigation. In Boulder Police Department's police report, officers said the student took his life to commit support to the Nazi-inspired movement.
Students close to the group, however, say the student took his life because of the passing of his father, not the Facebook Messenger group.
After the investigation, Reynolds said he received a slip of paper explaining he no longer attended his high school.
"There was no reconciliation with the families, it was just, 'Your kid is being expelled, call us if you have any questions.'"
Reynolds said the school didn't speak to either him or his parents.
"Instead of talking to any of the kids about it, they just made ridiculous assumptions that, 'Oh, we're an ethnic neo-Nazi group here in Boulder, Colorado, planning to take action upon ourselves to hurt those of ethnic origins,'" Reynolds said.
Reynolds said the group does not represent him, and he apologized for his involvement. He's working to move on with his life and has pursued employment. He said others who were involved also have expressed remorse.
"They're sorry that it got to this point," Reynolds said. "They didn't mean to hurt anybody's feelings, it was just a joke that turned sour."