A 21-year-old man from Virginia was arrested and charged with disorderly conduct after he called a black veteran reporter “n****r” outside of a church on Oct. 8 in Charleston, South Carolina.
Steve Crump, an award-winning Charlotte journalist, was returning to his van after conducting an interview on Hurricane Matthew in Charleston― just 10 blocks from Mother Emanuel where the 2015 church shooting took place ― when Brian Eybers began recording him on his iPad, according to the Charlotte Observer.
Crump told the outlet that Eybers claimed he was doing commentary on the neighborhood with his iPad when the reporter recalled overhearing him say, “There’s a black guy walking around here, no, he’s a slave, no, he’s the N-word.”
Crump, who’s the great-great grandson of slaves, and videographer Devin Futrelle turned their camera on Eybers. Crump told the Observer that Eybers “went from zero to 60,” and he asked Eybers to repeat what he just said.
Eybers hesitated in the video, which can be seen above, initially but he then complied when Crump told him to spell out what he called him.
“And what gives you the right to call me that?” Crump asked.
“The Constitution of the United States does,” he replied.
“So does that make you a person of superior?” Crump asked.
Eybers said, “Yeah.” The two continued their exchange before Eybers ripped into Crump.
“You’re a f**king idiot,” Eybers said to Crump. “So you really are a n****r, then. You’re acting n****rly.”
When Crump and company tried to leave in their van, Eybers stood in front of the van while he smoked. Crump called the police to report him for harassment.
In addition to disorderly conduct, cops charged Eybers with possession of drug paraphernalia, which police said was similar to a glass pipe used to smoke crack.
Charleston Mayor John Teckleberg apologized to Crump the same day of the incident. Crump, who’s created Emmy award-winning civil rights documentaries, said Eybers’ behavior was vulgar, especially since he did it in such a close proximity to the site where nine black churchgoers were murdered last year.
“You still have this kind of mentality being carried out where the wounds are very fresh and very real,” he told the outlet. The reporter shared his gratitude on Twitter with his supporters on Wednesday.
Eybers is currently in the Charleston County Detention Center, according to the Observer. His court date is set for Friday.
H/T The Root