By Ian Cummings

The tweet came from the official, verified account of the Kansas Division of Emergency Management. It was directed at Secretary of State Kris Kobach, in reference to his controversial appearance at a parade with a large replica machine gun.

"Hey Kris, I think you are a bad guy with a gun. Also, maybe worse, you a dumb guy with a gun," the tweet said.

The message, posted Sunday, was deleted within about a half-hour. Later in the day, state officials said the Twitter account had been hacked and that it was the insulting post that alerted them to the breach.

The tweet referenced Kobach's appearance Saturday in the Old Shawnee Days parade in Johnson County, where the Republican candidate for Kansas governor rode in a Jeep with a large gun mounted in the back.

The sight of Kobach with what appeared to be a .50-caliber machine gun stunned some onlookers and sparked criticism on social media. The city of Shawnee issued a public apology for the "concern and frustration" sparked by Kobach's appearance.

A spokeswoman for Kobach said the gun was a replica and defended its use in terms of the Second Amendment.

"The Secretary says those who use the excuse of school violence to restrict the right to bear arms are deeply misguided," Kobach spokeswoman Danedri Herbert said in a text message Saturday.

"We need to stand up for our Second Amendment rights and recognize the only thing that stops a bad guy with a gun is a good guy with a gun."

On Sunday, after the tweet knocking Kobach was posted and deleted, the Adjutant General's Department, which oversees the Division of Emergency Management, sent out a written statement saying the tweet was the result of a hacker.

"The Adjutant General's Department has deleted the tweet and has taken the necessary measures to fix the breach," the statement said.

Though the tweet was deleted, The Star retained a screen shot of the message.

The Division of Emergency Management is an arm of the Adjutant General's Department, which reports to the governor.

(c)2018 The Kansas City Star (Kansas City, Mo.)