A 71-year-old woman was been arrested and charged over an alleged attack against a pregnant soldier that was caught on video by multiple witnesses last weekend.
Judy Tucker was charged with one county of battery after multiple videos appeared to show her lunging at 34-year-old Stephanie Mitchell and 27-year-old Treasure Sharpe while inside a Cheddar’s Scratch Kitchen in Macon, Georgia on April 14.
Mitchell and Sharpe are both active-duty service members. Sharpe is currently pregnant. One video, captured by a witness, shows Sharpe patiently trying to explain the gravity of the situation:
I’m pregnant. Look at me, I’m pregnant. You’re pushing a pregnant lady.
According to the Bibb County Sheriff’s Office, the altercation stemmed from an argument about a parking space. Noted by local NBC affiliate WMGT, Mitchell and Sharpe told sheriff’s deputies that Tucker’s son approached them about the space and criticized their parking abilities, calling them “dumb bitches” who should “learn how to park.”
Mitchell and Sharpe apparently ignored the Tuckers’ first attempts to engage them, but said the disagreement quickly devolved once the younger Tucker started shouting homophobic slurs at the couple after everyone was inside the restaurant.
According to Mitchell, Sharpe only started recording at that point–once Tucker’s son allegedly called them “black lesbian bitches.”
In a now-viral clip of the incident, Judy Tucker can be heard saying, “You were getting in our way while we tried to park.” An argument ensues. Tucker shouts at the women, “Don’t you take a picture of me! You do not have the right to take a picture of me!” Then both Tuckers lunge for the phone that is recording them–multiple times making contact with and pushing the pregnant Sharpe, who visibly and audibly attempts to deescalate the situation.
A police report obtained by The Telegraph notes:
Mrs. Tucker lunged and struck Mrs. Sharpe in the face. With all of the lunging and slapping happening, it was never shown through cell phone video that Mrs. Mitchell or Mrs. Sharpe did anything wrong. In fact, Mrs. Mitchell tried, without fail, to stop the attack on Mrs. Sharpe.
Cheddar’s Communications Manager Hunter Robinson said, “We were appalled by the behavior of the individuals who confronted the two female service members. Such behavior flies in the face of our values and those individuals are no longer welcome in our restaurant.”
Tucker was charged with simple assault and bonded out of jail early Monday morning. An investigation is pending and more charges may be filed, according to The Telegraph.
Tucker’s occasional employer, Mercer University, severed ties with the sometimes art teacher over the incident. A statement from Mercer University spokesperson Kyle Sears reads, in part, “She has occasionally taught an art class in the past, but will not be teaching at Mercer in the future.”
For additional videos of the incident, see immediately below.
[image via screengrab/Edrico Wallace]
Follow Colin Kalmbacher on Twitter: @colinkalmbacher