Posted March 14, 2008 – An African-American TV reporter in South Carolina was attacked and called racial slurs by the angry relatives of a man who was arrested for allegedly offing his grandfather.
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The family members, all White, charged WSPA-TV Charmayne Brown and her Black cameraman, Ti Barnes, as they stood on the street near the family’s home in Union, the station’s News Director Alex Bongiorno told Fox News. They punched Brown in the head and struck Barnes as he pulled the assaulter off Brown, Bongiorno said.
"I think she's more affected by the verbal abuse than the physical abuse. She's really shaken up," Bongiorno said.
A video, taped by a White crew from another TV station, shows Brown defending herself, Fox says. The other crew were not attacked.
Arrested in the alleged assault were Tousha Smith, 31; Billie Joe Taylor, 31; and Trina Vinson, 48; all of whom were being held at a Union Jail Tuesday on assault and battery charges, authorities said.
The news crew were not charged.
The story that sparked the controversy involved the alleged homicide of 73-year-old Tommy Howell, killed by a blow to the head after an argument, police said, who found the body in his home and arrested his grandson, Shane Howell.