Brown took up her position in the street outside the Howell family home to report the arrest of one of the Howell’s for the murder of his grandfather on the nightly live feed. Other, all white crews, from other stations, were also doing the same.
Suddenly, the family came out of the house and began punching and then kicking Brown while yelling racial slurs. They also pulled her hair, grabbing tight hold of it whenever her black camermen tried to extradite her from the situation. The other station’s all white crew filmed the incident without intervening. Someone finally called the police. Someone else then put the footage up on youtube.
Tousha Smith, Billie Joe Taylor, and Trina Vinson have all been arrested on assault charges. South Carolina does not allow for hate crimes charges. Even if they did, the Police Chief’s comment is telling on how well such charges would fair: “These people were very upset,” White said. “I guess they just took it out the wrong way.”
My heart goes out to Charmayne and all of us trying to do our jobs in these hate filled times.
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citation info: Associated Press 3/12/2008