Man Arrested After Hurling Racial Slurs at African-American TV Reporter: 'What Did You Just Call Me?'
Brian Eybers, 21, was arrested earlier this month after calling African-American TV reporter Steve Crump the N-word, and claiming to be "superior"
A Virginia man was arrested and reportedly placed on house arrest after hurling racial slurs at an African-American TV reporter earlier this month in South Carolina, PEOPLE confirms.
Brian Eybers, 21, was arrested and charged with disorderly conduct and possession of drug paraphernalia after allegedly recording an iPad video of Steve Crump, a veteran WBTV reporter, on Oct. 8. A Charleston Police Department spokesman tells PEOPLE Eybers was booked into the Al Cannon Detention Center and jail records show he was released on Friday.
“He was doing commentary of the neighborhood,” Crump told WBTV of Eybers. “Then he starts off saying, ‘There’s a black guy walking around here, no he’s a slave, no he’s the n-word.’ ”
The spokesman says Eybers admitted to calling the man the racial slur. He added that Eybers stood in front of the crew’s news van and attempted to block them from leaving.
Crump, an award-winning journalist, told the Washington Post that he was in Charleston reporting on a story about cleanup efforts following Hurricane Matthew when he saw the young, white man attempting to produce “citizen journalism” on an iPad.
“He basically said, ‘There’s a black guy here. No, wait a minute, he’s a slave. No wait a minute, he’s a ‘N-word,’ ” Crump told the Post.
He continued: “I went from 0 to 60 in an instant, just like that. I just turned to [my cameraman] and said, ‘We need to get this guy on tape.’ ”
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Crump confronted the man, capturing the incident on video as the man sat on the sidewalk wearing a t-shirt, shorts and sneakers.
In footage of the altercation, Eybers is heard admitting to calling Crump the N-word — after initially denying the act.
“I believe I did call you the N-word,” Eybers said. When asked if he could spell the word, Eybers replied: “N as in Nancy, I as in indigo, G as in grant … E as in Edward and R as in Roger.”
Eybers explained that the United States’ Constitution gave him a “right” to call Crump the racial slurs, to which Crump responded: “If you knew your Constitution, the 9th and the 14th [amendments], you wouldn’t have done what you just did.”
“You’re a f—— idiot. You’re ignorant. So you really are a n— then,” Eybers said.
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The 21-year-old appeared in court on Friday, and Crump indicated in a pair of Twitter posts that he attended the hearing.
“Bryan Eybers has been placed under house arrest and ordered to a drug rehab program,” Crump wrote in one post. “In court I accepted his apology.”
In the wake of the incident, Charleston Mayor John Tecklenburg apologized to Crump on behalf of the city, WBTV reports.
The Charleston police spokesman says police do not know why the Virginia resident was in South Carolina.