Jason Rickels, fire chief in Tarrant, Alabama, pictured in a mugshot, was arrested last week for pulling a gun on a black real estate agent and photographer for organizing a photo shoot at his Georgia home, which was up for sale.
An Alabama fire chief has been arrested after pulling a gun on a black real estate agent and photographer who organized a pre-arranged photo shoot before showing buyers around his $ 925,000 Georgia home.
Jason Rickels, a fire chief in Tarrant, Alabama, sold his four-bed, four-bath home in Roswell, outside of Atlanta, and his wife arranged a viewing with their real estate agents and left the house.
Real estate agent Regina Lee, formerly of PalmerHouse Properties, and photographer, Dwayne Brodie, who are both black, said they arranged the viewing with First Multiple Listing Service to take photos at the house for Lee’s portfolio.
She arrived in a black trouser suit and high heels with Brodie and about six people, including a makeup artist.
But when Rickels’ wife Melody reportedly saw several people in their home on their CCTV with equipment in bags, she called the real estate agent to ask them to leave.
Ten minutes later, while they were still packing, she reportedly called her husband to report that people were breaking into their homes.
Rickels arrived at the address as they were leaving and reportedly drew a 9 mmm Ruger gun at the smartly dressed Lee and her photographer Brodie, who wore an outfit with his company logo, as they got into their car and put Brodie’s camera against the camera. ground.
He later claimed he thought the camera was a gun, but was arrested by police on charges of aggravated assault, criminal damage and possession of a firearm.
Rickels was captured in a cell phone video by photographer Dwayne Brodie after the incident, in which he claimed he “ feared for his life ” believing Brodie’s camera was a gun
Brodie showed that his camera had been knocked to the ground, in the photo, which he claimed was destroyed by Rickels
Real estate agent Regina Lee, of Palmer House Properties, pictured in a LinkedIn photo, said she prayed Rickels wouldn’t shoot her after pulling a gun at her and photographer Dwayne Brodie before taking a pre-arranged photo shoot.
Photographer Dwayne Brodie, shown here in a photo from CBS46, had his camera destroyed
Regina Lee later told me CBS46: ‘It was scary, and I prayed like’ Lord, please don’t let him shoot any of us’. I feel like he saw nothing but the color of our skin, because even the photographers wore their company logos. ‘
She added that when she got the call from Rickels’s wife asking if they wanted to leave, she was like, ‘… well this is planned, but if the owner doesn’t want me there then we’ll go right away. away. It was a confirmed appointment, it was definitely a confirmed appointment. ‘
In a video of the aftermath recorded by Brodie, he shows a shot of his broken camera on the road before showing Rickels next to his car and can be heard behind the camera saying, ‘You see this the f *** ing bullsh ** Do I have to deal with it? Cr ***** mom f *** ers, I’m at work. ‘
“Why do you have to be racist about it?” Rickels interrupted, shot and leaning against his car window.
Rickels is selling his four-bedroom, four-bath home in Roswell, Georgia, pictured on Zillow, for $ 925,000 and his wife had arranged a buyer’s visit with their real estate agents
The house is in the town of Roswell, outside of Atlanta, Georgia. About 165 miles from where Rickel’s fire chief is in Tarrant, Alabama
Brodie replied from behind the video, “Because you pulled a damn gun on me.”
Rickels said, “I thought you pulled a gun on me.”
Brodie then said, “You pulled on a gun me, jumped in my f *** ing car and broke my f *** ing camera. ‘
To which Rickels, who is now also filming the incident, said: ‘I only know that I walked upstairs and you pulled something on me. I was scared for my life, sir, it’s my house. ‘
“I’m not even near your house, I’m on the goddamn street, I’m not even in front of your house,” Brodie said.
Atlanta attorney Brian Steel, pictured, represents Rickels, saying it’s an ‘unfounded charge’
“Why do you have to make it racial?” Said Rickels.
To which Brodie replied, ‘Suck my d *** mother f *** er, f *** you, f *** you’.
Tarrant’s newly elected mayor Wayman Newton, 40, the city’s first black mayor, said in a statement to Al.com: ‘The City of Tarrant is aware of the current situation surrounding Fire Chief Jason Rickles. The municipality takes this very seriously and is investigating any violations of city policy. Under city policy, we will refrain from commenting on staff personal matters in a public forum. ‘
Atlanta attorney Brian Steel, who represents Rickels, told AL.com it was an “ unfounded charge. ”
“The bottom line is that we will fight this case ethically, lawfully and diligently to the end and Chief Rickels will be acquitted. He hasn’t done anything wrong, ”he said.