Carmen Ponder, Miss Black Texas 2016, was driving to a North Texas Walmart when she decided to pass a black truck.
The driver, she says, was driving erratically and she believed they could be drunk.
When she parked her car outside the Walmart, she realized the black truck had followed her. What followed was an incident that now has the recent Texas A&M graduate calling for the resignation of Terry Crews, the police chief in Commerce, Texas.
Crews had apparently been in the passenger’s seat of the car, teaching his 14-year-old daughter how to drive. He was angered when Ponder decided to pass him, and followed her all the way to the Walmart to confront her.
According to Ponder, who shared her experience in a tweet, Crews began yelling aggressively at her for passing him and did not identify himself as a cop.
“He continued yelling and cussing me out and I finally turned around and said, “it’s illegal” when he kept saying it was a 14 year old driving,” she wrote. “That’s when he screamed ‘oh whatever, you black b****!’”
Ponder decided to extricate herself from the situation by entering the store, but Crews and a group of men were waiting for her upon her exit.
When they demanded an apology for the now-acknowledged police chief, Ponder refused, trying to get to her car. That is when she notified that she was being detained, and another individual, also a police officer, grabbed her.
More police eventually arrived on the scene, siding with the police chief and the other individuals who claimed she was resisting arrest. “The cop then pulled out his cuffs and arrested me,” she said. “I spent 24 hours in jail and currently have a charge for avoiding arrest.”
“It’s just a reminder that our skin color, speaking specifically about the African-American community, is seen as something hostile, dangerous and illegal,” civil rights lawyer Lee Merritt, Ponder’s lawyer, told the Huffington Post. He is calling for Ponder’s charge to be dropped, and for for Crews to resign. action.
Crews has yet to release a statement. He has been placed on administrative leave.