A white apartment manager is under fire after getting caught on video assaulting a young Black boy.
Kim Jennings, the 62-year-old manager at Sedgefield Garden Apartments in Greensboro, North Carolina, was apprehended by law enforcement after an assault was caught on surveillance video between her and an 11-year-old Black boy, Jace Lee-Eury.
She was caught pouring soda on Jace after he was swimming in the apartment complex’s pool.
In footage from the surveillance video, Jennings was caught physically assaulting Jace, an 11-year-old boy, who had been swimming at the Sedgefield Garden Apartments’ pool with his younger sister, Jayla.
Jennings allegedly told the children to leave, as the pool was for residents only and the two children were playing by the pool without adult supervision, which isn’t allowed. In an interview with WXII, Jace explained that Jennings had approached him and his sister and told them to leave, before grabbing Jayla’s hair and hitting her.
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In response, Jace threw his bottle at Jennings, resulting in the 62-year-old woman pouring her Coke on him before hitting him with the bottle as well. In the video, Jace can be seen standing in shock after being assaulted by Jennings, wiping the soda from his face.
“She slapped me and then my brother came and splashed water on her,” Jayla told WXII, while Jace recalled, “When I was walking up the stairs to get to the gate, they were asking if I hit her because she had hit my sister first. So I hit her after she hit my sister. Then she poured Coke on me and hit me with the bottle twice.”
Authorities were immediately called to the scene where a warrant was obtained and Jennings was arrested on two counts of simple assault. She has since been released and awaits a court date next month.
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The children’s parents were furious after learning both their kids had been assaulted by Jennings.
The security footage of the incident has since begun circulating online, garnering support and an outpour of justice to be brought against Jennings. The mother of Jace and Jayla, Jae Eury, told WXII that she is still advocating for justice as well.
“What she did to him, if I put one finger on her, I am the one that’s going to be in trouble. And that’s just not cool. You hit my child, you hit both of my children,” Jae said. “You’ve been harassing my children all summer long and all they wanted to do was just swim in the heat. Just swim, enjoy themselves as children should.”
Despite the circumstances, Jae is still grateful for the public support. “The outpouring is great and it makes you feel good that people are behind you but, it’s kind of making me angrier, like I’m angry,” she continued, adding that their family is looking for Jennings to be fired and is intent on filing a lawsuit against her along with the property management company.
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Jennings herself offered up an apology, according to WFMY News 2, claiming that she regretted her actions and that she could’ve handled the situation differently if she wanted both Jace and Jayla to leave the pool area.
“The other day, when he was out there, we asked him to leave, and he was mouthy, and I just, I had a soda in my hand, and I tossed it on him, and then I popped him,” Jennings said.
“I did, I admit I did, and it was wrong. When you’ve done it and you’ve done it and you’ve done it and you’ve asked him not to come back. I just reacted. But, I will say that I’m sorry that I did that. I should’ve handled it differently.”
This entire incident not only highlights issues of racial bias, discrimination, and abuse of power but also how differently this ordeal would’ve been handled if it hadn’t been recorded.
Jennings’ actions reflect the repercussions that can occur when authority is wielded without consideration or empathy for the well-being and rights of others.
Whether her apology was sincere or not, it proves that there is a need for both education and understanding, while also leaving room for a continued commitment to learning from our mistakes and ignorant behavior.
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Nia Tipton is a Chicago-based entertainment, news, and lifestyle writer whose work delves into modern-day issues and experiences.
This article originally appeared on YourTango