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White Woman Fired after Video Shows Her Pulling a Gun on a Black Couple in Mississippi

Jaimie-lee Prince
May 31, 2019
12:14 P.M.

A Mississippi woman was fired for pulling a gun on campground visitors and falsely claiming they needed a reservation to be there.

An older white woman wearing a yellow t-shirt was captured on tape last weekend. She worked at Oktibbeha County Lake. With a gun in her hand, she spoke to the woman behind the camera.

Jessica Richardson and her sergeant husband Franklin Richardson uploaded the video to Facebook on Sunday. It has since gone viral and is found below.

In the description, they explained that they had wanted to go somewhere for a weekend picnic. A quick Google search led them to the Starkville lake.

Jessica explained what happened:

"Not five mins later a truck pulls up and a white lady screams at us, she then jumps out of her truck with a Gun.”

The unnamed woman is seen in the video and Jessica is heard explaining that "this lady literally just pulled a gun because we’re out here and didn’t have reservations."

The woman says, "That's what the office is for up there, ma'am." In response, Jessica urged, "All you had to do was tell us... We would have left. You didn't have to pull a gun."

The woman puts the gun away, but she doesn't back down. “Well I’m just telling you, you need to leave because it’s under private ownership … Y’all just can’t be out here … KOA will not let you," she said.

The couple later found out that the lake, owned by Starkville Kampgrounds of America (KOA), is indeed private property. However, they made a query at the office and the older woman's husband informed them that a reservation is not required to visit the lake.

Speaking to WCBI, Franklin explained what happened next:

“I get out and start talking to him. The first thing he says is, ‘Oh, you don’t need a reservation for the lake.’ Then, she pulls up flying, hops out of the car, then proceeded to yell at my wife, ‘Get in the car, you need to get back in the car,’ just cussing her out and she’s not even saying anything.”

By Tuesday, the woman was fired according to a KOA statement. Mike Gast, a spokesman for the organization, said:

“KOA does not condone the use of a firearm in any manner on our properties or those owned and operated by our franchises. The employee involved in the incident has been relieved of her duties.”

The video was viewed 630,000 times, shared 13,335 times, and received over 6,000 comments. In the comments, people were sympathetic to the company.

Many thanked Franklin, an Army National Guard sergeant who just returned from being deployed in the Middle East for nine months. He said it was "crazy" how he didn't have a gun pointed at him overseas, but in coming back home, it's the first thing that happens to him.

As for Jessica, she was disturbed and angered not only by the "heat" from the woman's eyes but also by the way she spoke to them initially.

"She was just like, ‘Get, get, you don’t belong here, you don’t belong here, you don’t belong here.' You say ‘Get, get’ to a stray dog that’s on your porch. That ‘Get, get’ got to me more than ‘You don’t belong here.’ ”

Incidents like these have been surfacing more and more as people have begun recording racist interactions similar to these. In July last year, a white man racially profiled a black woman, apparently believing she was too poor to live in his neighborhood.

The viral Facebook video showed as the North Carolina man requested an ID from Jasmine Edwards, and no one else. He then called the police, who dealt with the matter.

The police chief agreed that Edwards, who lives in the Winston-Salem neighborhood, did not need to show her ID. As the cop said, she only needed her "swim card," which worked.

In October 2018, two more black people not only had the police called on them but were arrested for waiting for a friend in a Starbucks coffee shop. Outrage ensued online in what was a clear case of racial profiling.

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