Racist tirade at Calgary grocery store sparks hate crime probe
Published Tuesday, December 5, 2017 8:10AM EST
Calgary police are investigating a potential hate crime caught on video at a grocery store checkout, where one man can be heard hurling racially-charged insults.
The video, which was recorded at a Superstore in the Sunridge neighbourhood on Saturday evening, only captures approximately 38 seconds of what witnesses say was a minutes-long tirade aimed at two people. In the video, the agitated man can be heard shouting swear words and racist insults, and at one point he is seen shoving a customer.
“This went for about 3-5 minutes,” witness Steve Lemmon, who recorded the video, told CTV Calgary on Monday. “It wasn’t a 30-second tirade, it wasn’t two comments. It was until the man exited the store.”
Lemmon says the man initially started shouting at a cashier who rang up an item twice, but the argument soon escalated to the point where he was also yelling at another customer who tried to intervene.
“I’ve never seen somebody attack somebody so aggressively based on the colour of their skin,” Lemmon said.
Investigators from the Calgary police hate crime unit say they’re now looking for the “full story” of the incident, and are encouraging witnesses to come forward.
Superstore owner Loblaw has condemned the incident in a statement.
“The incident that took place on Saturday was disgusting and has no place in one of our stores,” the Loblaw PR team said in a statement. “We are cooperating with the police investigation and have offered colleagues additional resources and support where required.”
With files from CTV Calgary