(Warning: Abusive Language)
A video of a black woman being kicked by two employees of a gas mart situated in front of Goodfellow and Delmar in St.Louis, Missouri has outraged the African-American community.
In the footage, the woman, identified as Kelli Adams, can be seen arguing with one of the managers, who decided to kick her in the stomach. Adams fell on the floor, but she got up and kept arguing that is when the other store employee decided to kick her once again.
Adams and both the store employees were verbally abusive. However, that does not give the store employees the right to beat the woman. It later turned out that one of the employees was actually the owner of the gas station.
Soon after the video made rounds on the internet, people from the black community gathered around the gas mart to protest. They made sure Adams, who is believed to be homeless, received proper medical attention and that the employees get arrested.
“We saw a video where a young lady got kicked by the store owner,” Franks said. “The man walked away, walked back up, and kicked her. That ain’t happening, so folks are talking about taking their community back,” said State Representative Bruce Franks Jr., who is also an activist.
After the protest six police vehicles arrived at the scene and arrested both the employees who are reportedly Arabs. The members of the black community not only wanted for the men to be arrested, they even wanted to shutdown the gas store, to make them suffer losses for a day.
Suspect being arrested after the community organized a protest in response to video showing a black woman getting kicked in front of the Gas Mart at Goodfellow and Delmar by man believed to be a store manager. Photo by Wiley Price. pic.twitter.com/pTBFHJ5i5Z— St. Louis American (@StLouisAmerican) July 24, 2018
“This is a cornerstone to the neighborhood,” said Wiley Price IV, a community activist who is running for state representative in the district. “Everybody from near and far comes to this gas station, especially since they shut down the gas station on Delmar and Skinker.”
“We decided that they’re done for the day,” Price said. “They didn’t need to make any more money in our community. I come up here all the time. I have been coming up here for years. They treat me awesomely. The guy who did this is somebody who I consider a friend.”
“One of the workers, an Arab gentleman, kicked her in the stomach like she was a dog,” said Jermaine, one of the protesters and residents of the community. “So we’re here to shut it down. No more business for these people. They’re going to understand that we feed them. That they live off our community.”
Even if the black woman was at fault – the store managers had no right to launch a physical attack on her.
Later, two people representing the owners of the gas mart came to the protest and read an apology from the managers who attacked Adams during the confrontation.
"On behalf of the entire Gas Mart family, we want to extend our sincerest apologies for the negative experience that has occurred at our location 5745 Delmar Blvd," the statement said.
"Gas Mart does NOT condone this kind of behavior nor is it tolerated. We will take all the appropriate measures needed to assure an incident like this does not happen again. Encounters of violence will not be tolerated at ANY capacity at any of our locations."
Adams returned back to the store after receiving medical treatment and heard their apology. She then hugged the representatives and said she forgives the employees – after making it clear that she would like to see the store closed.
Thumbnail/ Banner Credits: Reuters, Peter Nicholls