A man who has been identified as a U.S. Army sergeant was filmed harassing and threatening a Black man who was walking through a South Carolina neighborhood.
Footage of the incident, first uploaded to Shirell Johnson’s Facebook page, shows a man identified by social media users as U.S. Army sergeant first class Jonathan Pentland walking alongside a young Black male only identified as Deandre, asking him what he’s doing in the neighborhood and aggressively telling him to leave. At one point in the video, Pentland pushes Deandre.
“The young black male’s name is Deandre. We did not know him nor had ever met him until last night,” Johnson wrote in a Facebook post. “The young lady recording the video we also did not know until last night. She saw the young man in distress and knew he didn’t do anything wrong so she started videoing for his safety!”
“We waited with [Deandre] until the officer arrived and we repeatedly informed the officer that D was assaulted (you all didn’t see the second instance) when [Pentland] slapped his hand and his phone fell and cracked,” Johnson wrote. “The officer told us that his supervisor told him that he could only charge the white guy with malicious injury to property and not assault! Deandre was calm throughout and he had been in that neighborhood-[The Lakes at Barony Place] walking plenty of times and he lives in the summit!”
Twitter users sent the video to accounts associated with Fort Jackson, resulting in Fort Jackson Commanding General Milford Beagle Jr. tweeting, “This is by no means condoned by any service member. We will get to the bottom of this ASAP.”
The video doesn’t show what led up to the confrontation, but it starts with Pentland telling Deandre, “go away right now.” Deandre responds by telling Pentland to call the police. Pentland’s wife, Cassie Pentland, tells him they’ve already been called. The couple then accuses Deandre of “picking fights” with people in the neighborhood.
“What is it that you are doing here?” Pentland asks him aggressively.
“Walking.” Deandre replies.
“Then walk,” Pentland fires back.
Deandre then tells Pentland that he’s walking back to his house.
“Well you’ve been here like 15 minutes now … Walk away,” Pentland says. “Walk away right now. You need help? I’m happy to help.”
Deandre then accuses Pentland of hitting him.
“There’s a difference between pushing you,” Pentland says before telling him he is “aggressing on my neighborhood” and violently shoving him.
“You either walk away or I’m going to carry your a** out of here,” Pentland says.
When Deandre tells Pentland not to touch him, Pentland says, “What are you going to do?”
“Let’s go, walk away. I’m about to do something to you,” Pentland says. “You better start walking right now. … You’re in the wrong neighborhood motherf*cker. Get out.”
Pentland’s wife, Cassie, can be heard telling Deandre, “Sir, you’re acting like a child. Move on. You picked a fight with some random young lady that’s one of our neighbors.” Deandre tells her that he didn’t pick a fight with anyone, and that he was the one who was confronted first.
Johnson wrote on Facebook that Deandre lives in a neighborhood not far from where the incident occurred and has walked through the neighborhood “plenty of times.”
Watch Johnson’s video and the reaction from General Milford Beagle Jr. below:
This is by no means condoned by any service member. We will get to the bottom of this ASAP.
— Fort Jackson Commanding General (@fortjacksoncg) April 14, 2021