Community, law enforcement react to viral racist road rage video

Published: Nov. 13, 2019 at 8:45 PM CST
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LAKE CHARLES, La. (KPLC) - A recent video posted to social media showing a white male calling an African-American female a racial slur has reached the masses and it’s sparked even more outrage because it happened right here in our own community.

In 2019, it’s disheartening that we still have to address racial tensions and racist behavior, especially when it directly affects members in our community.

You at home may have seen the video or you may have been one of the millions to share it on social media. Nevertheless, it’s sparked a much-needed conversation.

“I happened to catch the video of this girl at a red light when the guy in the truck pulls on side of her and calls her a......”

Cellphone video that has been viewed more than 3 million times shows an enraged driver shouting a slur at a young black female. We’ve since reached out to the young lady in the video but she declined an interview with us for fear of her safety.

In reference to the video, 7News decided to reach out to local law enforcement to see if the incident constitutes a crime.

“I don’t know why he went to this level of anger of using racial, inappropriate comments but regardless it’s inappropriate in just about every fashion imaginable, but it’s not illegal,” said Calcasieu Parish Sheriff Tony Mancuso.

Although Sheriff Tony Mancuso says no criminal offense was committed, in cases like these there are consequences, which in some cases result in loss of employment.

“For you to lose your control over something that every one of us does at some point in our lives is unacceptable," said Mancuso. “I think we can all learn from this.”

After sitting down with licensed counselor Jackie Bourassa, she said there’s a bigger issue that needs to be addressed in our community.

"We need to support each other from a humanistic perspective and compassion and that's not so easily done in the climate of Lake Charles."

She said education plays a vital role and that starts at a young age, not only in the home but in the school system.

“Teaching empathy, compassion, awareness, and insight should start young,” said Bourassa. “As a community, we need to take calculated risks by coming together not for money, but for peace...but it starts with you and how you view the world.”

Overall, residents like Nathaniel Sap feel that the incident serves as a prime example as a need for change, change he feels should start right here at home.

“I ain’t God and it’s not my place to judge but this ain’t cool and we ain’t getting nowhere," said Sap. "Everybody trying to impeach somebody or do this and that...we have to come together or do something different.”

At last check, we learned that the victim has not filed a police report. We did reach out to both parties in the video for comment.

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