Outrage after firefighter who spit on Black child, used N-word, at Hooters found not guilty despite eye-witness testimony
A Kansas City firefighter accused of spitting on a 3-year-old black child, threatening the boy’s grandfather and using a racial slur at Hooters was cleared on all charges—despite witnesses testifying that he committed the acts.
Two independent witnesses testified that they saw and heard portions of the incident, but Judge Cynthia Cornwell said their statements were incomplete and contradictory, the Kansas City Star reported.
But after more than five hours of testimony, the judge found Terrence “Jeremy” Skeen not guilty of battery, assault and disorderly conduct.
Judge Cynthia Cornwell said that the witness statements were incomplete and contradictory and that the charges had not been proven beyond a reasonable doubt.
The boy’s grandfather, Raymond Harris, said he was walking over to collect his grandson when a restaurant patron told him that Skeen, who was sitting at a nearby table, had spat on the child.
The witnesses, who was at Hooters at the time of the incident, said they were stunned when an off-duty firefighter told police he was a first responder. “He basically said get that little ‘blank’ up off the floor,” one witness explained. “The n-word started to get thrown around.”
Police were called and when the witness found out the man was a first responder he was stunned.
“I didn’t catch what the officer said to him, but his immediate response was ‘It’s ok, I’m a fireman,’ like that was supposed to blanket cover everything for him,” the witness stated.