A white woman and her husband were arrested for pointing a gun at a black woman and her teenage daughter, outside a Chipotle restaurant in Orion Township, Michigan. The couple has been identified as Jillian Wuestenberg and her husband Eric Wuestenberg.
The viral video and subsequent arrest of the couple have sparked outrage on social media with many users demanding the release of the couple. The Wuestenbergs have been charged with felonious assault. If found guilty, they could face up to four years in jail.
Video of the Incident Goes Viral
The incident took place after Jillian Wuestenberg allegedly bumped into Makayla Green, the teenaged girl. The bumping incident was not recorded on the video that has now gone viral on the internet. In her defense Wuestenberg said that the teenager was blocking her from entering the car.
The video then shows a heated altercation taking place between the black woman identified as Takela Hill and Jillian. "You're very racist and ignorant," the teenager is heard saying in the video, as Jillian's husband helps her usher into the passenger seat. According to The Detroit News, the altercation continues with Jillian telling Hill, "You cannot just walk around calling white people racist."
"Why would you bump her? Why didn't you say sorry?" Hill continuously asks the woman in response. Jillian goes on to say: "White people aren't racist ... I care about you and I'm sorry if you had an incident that has made someone make you feel like that. No one is racist."
Jillian rolls her window up and the SUV begins backing out of the parking spot. Hill is seen stepping back as the SUV starts to drive away, before she hits the back window of the vehicle, claiming she thought the driver was going to hit them. That's when Jillian jumps back out of the SUV and pulls a gun on Hill and her daughter, and Hill can be heard saying, "She got the gun on me!" as the woman yells, "Get the fâk back!" reported the outlet.
Addressing a press conference, Oakland County Sheriff Michael Bouchard said that both the parties gave very different stories from each other and claimed they felt extremely threatened.
Eric Wuestenberg, Former Veteran, Fired from Job
The Heavy reported that following the charges, Eric Wuestenberg, who served in the US Air Force from 1995 to 2009, had been fired from his job at Oakland University, where he worked as the school's coordinator of veteran support services.
In a statement, the University said: "We have seen the video and we deem his behavior unacceptable. The employee has been notified that his employment has been terminated by the university."
Wuestenberg's LinkedIn page says that he volunteers for Michigan Republican Congressman Mike Bishop and worked on Bishop's Michigan Veterans Advisory Council, reported the outlet. The couple has also deleted the social media accounts after the incident.
Support Pours in For the White Couple
As soon as the news of Wuestenbergs' arrest broke, the Twitter users came out in support of the white couple demanding their release. Even as many hailed the arrest of the couple, there were several others who came out in their support. "Hope the @NRA or someone comes to Jillian Wuestenberg's defense because these ppl are playing politics. Oakland County's sheriff is not basing his charges off facts! Jillian Wuestenberg did everything in her power to show positive vibes!" wrote a user.
"@oaklandsheriff. So your department lets people threaten, harass, dox, and assault members of your community? Jillian Wuestenberg and Eric Wuestenberg are victims of a hate crime. Disgusting," tweeted another.
"I watched the video of Jillian Wuestenberg & she didn't even have her finger on the trigger. So, where is the treat. It's ok if they bash your head in & 5 gang up on you. But if you defend yourself, you go to jail. It worked though, woman backed off. Backwards!" expressed another user.