— NAACP Charlotte Meck (@CharlotteNAACP1) March 12, 2017
It started with an allegation of shoplifting, and ended with a full-on physical confrontation, but no charges have even been filed. Protesters in Charlotte, North Carolina are outraged after a beauty supply store owner was caught on video attacking a suspected thief. But absolutely no charges have been filed, WBTV reports.
As seen on video, owner Sung Ho Lim confronted a woman over stolen eye lashes. She denied the allegation, and things got tense. Shoving ensued, Lim kicked the woman, then he knocked her to the ground, and put her in a choke hold.
“The female attempted to leave the store, but [the owner] blocked the exit and asked the female to show him what was in her bag since the alarm had gone off,” police said, according to the outlet. “The female refused and a struggle ensued. The female then left the store and fled in a silver dodge sedan.”
Lim told WBTV that he was just trying to keep her in the store until cops arrived. He publicly apologized for the attack.
“I don’t know,” he said. “It just happened. I went crazy. No matter what the reason, I feel very sorry to her and to them.”
“Them” being the protesters. The Charlotte-Mecklenburg chapter of the NAACP joined a Sunday demonstration against Lim’s store Missha Beauty. The apparent racial dynamic at play has people asking questions. Lim, who has denied the racism claim, is Asian. The woman is black. Nonetheless, NAACP President Corine Mack said he needs to apologize to African-Americans in the community since they comprise most of his customers.
“He took it upon himself to treat her in a way that no woman should be treated,” she said. “In fact, no person should be treated. That’s why I’m so disgusted and hurt.”
Others, including local civil rights activist John C. Barnett, said Lim should’ve have used force because he wasn’t even a police officer.
The woman hasn’t been identified, police said.
[Screengrab via NAACP]