Police in Norfolk, Va., have arrested three more black teenagers in connection with a mob assault last month on two white reporters for the local newspaper, a case which has sparked national public outrage but little media attention.
Two 16-year-olds and one 13-year-old were taken into custody Saturday, each charged with two counts of simple assault by mob and one count of participation in a riot, both of which are misdemeanors.
It brings the total number of arrested suspects to four, since another 16-year-old was arrested May 3, charged with throwing a missile at a vehicle, a felony, as well as two counts of simple assault by mob, destruction of property and participation in a riot, all misdemeanors.
WND columnist Thomas Sowell envisions a white backlash if the media and authorities don’t tell the truth about these black mobs. Read his column, “Arrest black supremacists or free the white ones,” today.
As WND originally reported, the couple was pummeled at a traffic light April 14 by dozens of black teens, and the Virginian-Pilot newspaper did not report the incident for two weeks, despite the fact the victims, Dave Forster and Marjon Rostami, are both news reporters for the paper.
The attack was first reported in an opinion piece by columnist Michelle Washington.
“Wave after wave of young men surged forward to take turns punching and kicking their victim,” Washington wrote, describing the onslaught that began when Dave Forster and Marjon Rostami stopped at a traffic light while driving home from a show on a Saturday night. A crowd of at least 100 black young people was on the sidewalk at the time.
“Rostami locked her car door. Someone threw a rock at her window. Forster got out to confront the rock-thrower, and that’s when the beating began. …
“The victim’s friend, a young woman, tried to pull him back into his car. Attackers came after her, pulling her hair, punching her head and causing a bloody scratch to the surface of her eye. She called 911. A recording told her all lines were busy. She called again. Busy. On her third try, she got through and, hysterical, could scream only their location. Church and Brambleton. Church and Brambleton. Church and Brambleton. It happened four blocks from where they work, here at the Virginian-Pilot.”
Today, WAVY-TV, the local NBC affiliate, covered the first appearance in court for three of the suspects.
Afterward, when asked if the attack was racially motivated, one teen suspect simply responded, “No.”
Bruce Sams, the attorney for one of the 16-year-olds, told the station, “I don’t think it has a racial intent. It was certainly an incident that happened that was more sparked. I don’t believe, from my understanding, from what I even know of what happened, that they could even be identified as two white individuals in the car.”
A 16-year-old female witness to the attack spoke with WAVY, but the girl was so afraid of retaliation, she insisted on hiding her identity.
When asked if she thought the suspect threw the rock at the victims’ car because the driver was white, she responded, “They were throwing stuff, just because … just because. They were just hyped and ‘Oh I want to do something’ … So they threw something. They didn’t know there were going to be white people in the car.”
She told the station there were dozens of people yelling on the sidewalks, mostly kids her age.
“There were cars leaving the party and there were regular people from everyday life, just driving around,” she said. “As they were driving, people kept going. I was confused like, ‘Is anybody going to get out the car? Is anybody going to beep, stop, help?’”
When Forster finally got back into the Chevy Cavalier, the girl says a group of teens went to check on him. They told her the driver had blood on his face, but said he was fine and planned to tell police.
Norfolk Police classified the case as a hate crime on its initial police report, but police spokesman Chris Amos told WND, “That is a glitch in the report entry software nothing more. Again, it IS NOT being investigated as a hate crime.”
But Amos also did not deny the possibility of it being a hate crime against the white couple.
“Could it have been? Yeah, it could have, I guess,” he added. “We certainly haven’t ruled that out, but we haven’t seen anything that jumps out at us other than someone throwing a rock at someone’s car.”
A reader of the Virginian-Pilot in the Ghent section of Norfolk is telling police today the charges against the teens don’t go far enough.
“If this was a group of white kids attacking any non-white ethnicity at a stoplight,” the reader named Chris said, “the Department of Justice would be in Norfolk pressing for civil rights charges so fast your heads would spin. This is a prime example of the double standard in today’s society. No one will ever be able to proclaim equality if incidents continue to be handled like this. Reverse racism is still racism. As soon as people get over their ‘white guilt,’ we can make progress. Neither side of my family made it to the U.S. until 1908. I owe the African-American community no apologies, and I live my life by that belief. Stop feeling guilty for things you have no connection to.”
The editor of the Virginian-Pilot has come under heavy criticism from members of the public and the likes of Fox News anchor Bill O’Reilly for burying the story for two weeks and still continuing to downplay it.
“They think we buried the story. We didn’t. We didn’t bury anything,” Denis Finley, the paper’s editor, told WND. “People are just not stopping to think. What would be my motivation for protecting people who beat up two of my reporters? It’s completely ludicrous that I would do that.”
“I think we did the right thing. I think we’re on solid ground. I don’t think we can win here. If we had published a story, it would look like we’re playing favorites. Because I didn’t publish it, now I’m accused of a cover-up.”