WASHINGTON, GA ( WJBF) — A debate over a George Floyd shirt led to a heated exchange between the Mayor and a councilman that ended in an ethics complaint being filed.

The mayor declined to be on camera, but says the ethics complaint comes after a 13 minute profanity laced exchange from Washington city councilman Nathaniel Cullars.

The complaint states city council members were asked to wear professional and neutral clothing for the pictures to be taken and posted in city hall.

Councilman Nathaniel Culllars wore a George Floyd t-shirt that said ” I can’t breathe.”

While the complaint states there is nothing offensive about the t-shirt it was not appropriate to be worn in a portrait to be mounted at city hall.

” I don’t see anything about this shirt. If somebody comes to city hall to see it what would be offensive about knowing that this guy died at the hands of a cop,” Cullars said.

Councilman Maceo Mahoney recorded the conversation and was also included in the ethics complaint for being complicit in the verbal assault.

Both Mahoney and Cullars say the complaint was improperly filed and should be thrown out — Mahoney also saying he believes it could be retaliatory due to him being vocal about wanting city attorney Barry Fleming to resign.

” If we don’t stand up and voice our concerns about disenfranchising African American voters nobody is going to fight that fight, but us and as an elected official that’s our duty,” Mahoney said.

The ethics complaint will be discussed at a meeting on Friday.