Home Race Is GHCWB (Giving Homeless Change While Black) Prima Facie Evidence of Criminal...

Is GHCWB (Giving Homeless Change While Black) Prima Facie Evidence of Criminal Activity? [UPDATED 4/26]


UPDATE #2 (4/26) by Lowell: Also see here for a lengthy statement by the Virginia Beach Police Department, which says, “At this time, this incident appears to have not occurred, or if something did happen, did not occur as described by ‘Hermione Danger’.”

UPDATE 4/26 by Lowell: See below for a relevant tweet from the Virginian Pilot…


One of the strongest, most positive visions of America comes though embracing the idea of, the aspiration of a “more perfect union.”  Rather than simply the end result of actions by a group of privileged white males 240 years ago, the truest nature of the American ideal is a recognition that “perfection” is beyond us all and that we must, as individuals and society and nation, strive to improve ourselves each passing day.

This morning’s most moving breakfast table reads were two Washington Post stories on “a memorial that refuses to let Dixieland look away“, The National Memorial for Peace and Justice. Deneen Brown’s Metro story opens with the story of a December 4, 1931 lynching of 23-year-old Matthew Williams in Salisbury, Maryland …

…bound in a straightjacket, thrown out a hospital window … the mob taunted Williams, raising and lowering his body several times before finally dropping him to his death … before burning his body, they cut off his fingers and toes and threw them on porches in the black neighborhood, shouting ‘Make n– sandwiches’

The National Memorial is providing a place and a spark for confronting the ugly past of lynching.

While there are many ways how, over the decades, America and American culture has changed for the better — that there are steps toward a “more perfect union” — and that those ropes from trees might be in the past (as history to study and learn from), the sad truth is that intimidation, harassment, discrimination, and abuse of blacks in America is NOT in the past. Whether arrested at Starbuck’s or shot while unarmed, too many Black Americans have good given reason to fear law enforcement personnel.

With The Post articles and considerations about things like the Starbuck’s arrest in mind this morning, a thread about events in Virginia Beach, entered my twitter stream. Kelsey Bew (“Herminione Danger”), with clear pain and anguish, lays out how her boyfriend was stopped by police after having given 50 cents to a homeless man. The stated reason:

Okay, not necessarily great but not necessarily irrational and unreasonable … “saw what looked like a potential drug deal late at night and stopping to see if something was going on.”  Not saying that that was right or okay, necessarily, but things went truly downhill from there.

Gun drawn at his back … does anyone not understand why he didn’t “feel comfortable reaching in [his] pocket?”

Kelsey’s thread is extensive, laying out how terrified her boyfriend was, how a car search (by dogs) found nothing, how he was left after hours of stoppage with things missing and a messed up car, how he was treated in ways that simply shouldn’t be occurring. And also, by the way, how the local Sheriff’s Deputy sought (unlike the local police) to treat him reasonably and like a human being (even directly thanking that Sheriff).

Kelsey shouldn’t have to explain how good a man her boyfriend is to have to lay the foundation for why her boyfriend was “SOBBING” and “never been more terrified in his life”.

Let’s be clear, that twitter thread is by one person — who wasn’t even a direct witness to the events. Even so, the “smoke” from the general problems in our society related to police brutality against Blacks, and the distressing “smoke” of her twitter thread certainly suggest that there is some “fire” there.

My honest question after reading KelseyBew’s twitter thread:

  • John mor

    With every passing hour it seems this story is not true. Virginia Beach police have responded by saying they have found no record of the stop, and the young lady has not contacted them. They have ascertained her true Id and are trying to reach out. Several media reps have also reached out. If true it needs to be investigated, action taken. If not, this young lady at the very least owes a lot of people an apology.

    • mary5920

      There are two diaries on this at Daily Kos. Would like some verification of the story.

      • A_Siegel

        One is repost of this one. Have included there the VB police facebook post on this.

    • Updated the post with information throwing “Hermione Danger”‘s story into serious doubt.

    • A_Siegel

      Tried to write, in original, in way not attacking the tweeter and not necessarily giving it 100% credence … Lowell/I updated when information came in.

  • Chuck

    So far “Hermione Danger” has refused to talk to the police and refused to talk to the multiple news stations that have tried to contact her.

    She said he left to take a friend to the airport @ 10:30PM (a 45 minute drive). The last flight was @ 10:05PM, the next one was @ 5:40AM.

    One news article stated “State Police note that in this area, Sheriff deputies work the court systems and are only in their vehicles during the day to serve warrants and court documents, they do not work evening or midnight shifts.”

  • Scott Robinson

    Shouldn’t this be more like “Perpetrating a Hoax while Black”?