The president of the Timmonsville, S.C., chapter of the NAACP wants the world to know two things. (1) The Timmonsville police are racist. (2) When they speak, they sound exactly like him.
On April 13, the Rev. Jerrod Moultrie attempted to prove the first of these propositions and succeeded in proving the second with a Facebook post recounting his run-in with local law enforcement over a pair of minor traffic violations. In his post, Moultrie included a transcript of his reconstruction of the entire exchange between himself and a member of the Timmonsville police force, who he claims stopped him because he “was driving a Mercedes Benz and going home in a nice neighborhood.
Here verbatim is Moultrie’s version of what went down:
Me: hello sir how can I help you
Officer: I am stopping you cause you fail to put on a turn signal and do you have any drugs in the car
Me: sir how would you know If I used my tum [sic] signal when you was approaching me as I turn and is there any drugs in your car?
Officer: License and registration
Me:sir can I take off my seat belt and get it
Me: (as i open glove box i said )sir this is a new car i just purchased and all ! [sic] have is bill of sale, insurance card and registration from car I am transferring tags
Officer: ok where you work and who car is this and why you in this neighborhood
Me: sir I am a pastor and I live in the house on the left
Officer:And I guess I am the bill [sic] gates
Me: sir what’s the problem
Officer: I ask who car for the last time and why you in this neighborhood
Me: I told you for last time who car and where I live.( as my neighborhood starts to come out there house) By the way sir can I speak to your supervisor
Officer: walks away with my information When he returned he said did you know your tags comes back to another vehicle
Me: sir I just explain this to you
Officer: you need to park this vehicle and never drive it till you get this straight with DMV
Me: sir I have purchased multiple vehicles and never heard this now officer and I start fussing cause I said well i will be driving my car sir and anyt time I want
Officer: I am waming you to not drive this car till tags get straight and just know I am doing you a favor tonight not taking you to jail or writing you a ticket
Me: sir you might be doing your Self a favor but you certainly not doing me a favor.
According to ABC affiliate WPDE, a local activist named Timothy Waters was so outraged by Moultrie’s post that he demanded to see a copy of the officer’s dash and body cam video. After viewing the footage, he was angrier than before, although the target of his pique was now Moultrie. Said Waters:
Once I got a copy of that body cam, it’s as if he made the whole story up. And I felt like he set us back 100 years, because think about all of the racial profiling cases [that] are true.
Timmonsville Police Chief Billy Brown was equally crestfallen, telling reporters:
When I saw the video, I was shocked that someone who is supposed to be a community leader, a pastor, and head of the NAACP would just come out and tell a blatant lie. It bothered me. It really bothered me, thinking about the racial unrest it could’ve [sic] cost in the community and it’s just troubling to me that someone who held a position like that would come out and just tell a lie.
Moultrie refused to comment to reporters, instead referring them to Timmonsville NAACP officers Kenneth McAllister and Henry James Dixon. Both told the station that they didn’t need to see the video because they support Moultrie, and know he’s a man of integrity who wouldn’t lie.
As Warner Wolf used to say, let’s go to the videotape: