A Mississippi man has been arrested after a shocking viral video showed him laughing after nearly running over a group of Black teens on bicycles with his car.
On Tuesday, Ripley police arrested and charged Mark Hall—who’s white—with nine counts of simple assault, CBS affiliate WREG Memphis reported. According to Action News 5 Memphis, Hall uploaded a video of the attack to his Facebook stories Sunday.
In a censored copy of the video, which was obtained by Fox 13 Memphis, a driver is behind the wheel of their car, following a group of Black kids on bicycles.
“Aww, hell. Fifty points,” the driver says at a speed of more than 35 mph. He passes the cyclists and laughs out the window.
“Stupid, n——,” the driver reportedly then says.
Carmello Thomas told Action News 5 that he and his friends were out riding bikes in their neighborhood when the driver raged toward them.
“I moved out the way just in time,” Thomas told the news outlet. “And then he just kept going and I saw him laugh.”
According to WREG, the group said Hall hit a bike during his fury, and one of the teens’ wheels was damaged after the driver nipped the back of his bike.
The teens’ parents and community members filed in front of Ripley City Hall early Tuesday to voice their frustration with the lack of action being taken against Hall, WREG reported.
“[My son’s] supposed to be scared if he’s going to pass a test or not, not whether someone wants to take his life and he doesn’t even know this individual and hasn’t done anything to him,” parent Willie Hills said. “That’s not what he should be worried about.”
“He could have hurt those guys. He could have killed somebody or anything, but he had no regard for those Black lives that were out there,” parent Clarence Holmes told Fox 13.
Some parents have questioned why the charges against Hall weren’t more serious.
“This is not something that is not going to get swept under the rug,” Hills told a crowd outside the Ripley Police Department Tuesday in a video that’s been viewed nearly 10,000 times. “I’m going to be the loudest person in the county, if I gotta stand by myself. But enough is enough.”
“You got a video. The video shows plain as day the man’s social media account,” Hills continued while standing next to his son. “You hear exactly what he said: ‘I’m about to collect points.’ What does that mean? Then, he speeds up. You can hear his truck revving towards the kids. You can see the kids scurrying out of the way.”
Ripley Police Chief Scott White said Hall’s misdemeanor charge could be raised to a felony, and hate crimes could be tacked on during the investigation, Tippah County News in Mississippi reported.
“His intentions were not pure. So, what do we need to investigate?” Hill said. “I’m going to be honest with you. If it had been one of us, we would’ve already been locked up, the book would’ve already been thrown against us, and the case would’ve already been made before any court date. But we’re sitting here trying to figure out two days later ‘what if.’ It’s unacceptable. And honestly, I’m not going to be quiet about it.”
The Ripley Police Department did not immediately respond to The Daily Beast’s request for comment Wednesday.
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