A viral video out of South Carolina is prompting concerns about “walking while Black.” Jonathan Pentland, a U.S. Army sergeant first class, is now charged with third-degree assault after he was caught on camera shoving a young Black man who was walking down the street in front of the man’s house. While we don’t see on video what started the confirmation the AP explains what we do see:
The recording begins with Pentland, a U.S. Army sergeant first class, asking the Black man what he’s doing in the area. The Black man says he was simply walking and not bothering anyone.
Throughout the three-minute video, Pentland continuously demands that the other man leave the neighborhood, getting in his face and, at one point, pushing the man, who almost falls to the ground.
“Let’s go, walk away,” he said. “I’m about to do something to you. You better start walking right now.”
There was also a part that I didn’t record of the taller man slapping the phone out of Deandre’s hands and stepping on it. The taller man also pushed Deandre several times off camera
— Shadae (@ShadaeMccallum) April 14, 2021
The Washington Post adds: The video stoked long-standing concerns about harassment faced by Black Americans, and law enforcement and Army officials condemned Pentland’s behavior as “disturbing” and as bringing “disrespect” on Fort Jackson, the large training center where he was stationed.
Walking while black.
The kind of hate that our black skin attracts is absolutely ridiculous. There are so many #jonathanpentland’s in positions of power who abuse their authority and engage in white supremacy activities, just like this.
— Khary Penebaker (@kharyp) April 14, 2021
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