Sam Johnson was fired as CEO of Visuwell after he was videotaped telling a boy in a dress, "You look like an idiot." He also took a swipe at the boy's boyfriend who was recording the video. A woman's voice could be heard pleading with Johnson to stop bothering the boys. The teens were celebrating a prom in Nashville, Tennessee.
The student, Dalton Stevens, 18, said Monday that he decided to wear a dress to his senior prom in Franklin, about 20 miles south of Nashville, to show that "clothing is really genderless" and "it has no meaning."
Johnson denied that he was harassing the couple to Newsweek, claiming that the video was edited and that he initially went over because the group of teens was being loud and vulgar.
"We had just sat down for dinner at this restaurant that we frequent, and I was returning from the restroom when I was presented with their loud cursing," Johnson told Newsweek. "Making it about the dress was their idea, and they edited out most of the exchange."
Stevens denied being loud or cursing before Johnson approached him.
In a Tweeted statement, Visuwell said Johnson was no longer with the company.
"We unequivocally condemn the behavior exhibited by Sam Johnson in a recent video widely circulated on social media," VisuWell wrote. "After investigating the matter and speaking to individuals involved, the VisuWell Board of Directors has chosen to terminate Mr. Johnson from his position as CEO, effective immediately. VisuWell's culture emphasizes respect, kindness, and compassion, especially for those from traditionally marginalized communities, and we maintain a zero-tolerance policy for intolerance of any kind. Mr. Johnson's actions contradicted the high standards we set for ourselves in promoting the health of those who use our platform."