A Texas school board member and police chief both stepped down this week following the arrest of a former Miss Black Texas who was allegedly called a “black bitch” during the altercation.
In May, the board member, Michael Beane, and 23-year-old Carmen Ponder entered a heated discussion in a Walmart parking lot after Ponder drove Beane’s 15-year-old daughter off the road during a driving lesson, according to the police report.
Ponder told Beane his daughter shouldn’t be driving. Beane responded with “Oh whatever, you black bitch,” according to Ponder’s lawyer, S. Lee Merritt.
In the police report, Beane said he only called her a “bitch.”
After Ponder walked into Walmart, Beane saw Commerce Police Cheif Kerry Crews, who was off-duty and not in uniform, in the parking lot and told him the story. As Ponder left Walmart, Crews approached her.
According to Merritt, Crews told Ponder that she could either apologize or go to jail. A cell phone video shows Ponder calling 911 as two uniformed police officers arrive on the scene. Crews instructed them to handcuff Ponder as she tried to leave.
Ponder spent 24 hours in jail, but the charges were later dropped due to lack of evidence.
Crews announced his resignation Monday with a letter read by the mayor during a city council meeting about the incident, according to the Daily Beast.
“As a result of being off-duty I was unprepared for the response I received from Ms. Ponder, and I became emotional,” Crews wrote.
Beane resigned from the Commerce school board Tuesday.
“He said that it was an unfortunate situation,” a spokesperson told the Daily Beast. “He has apologized for some curse words, but he has nothing else to apologize for.”
Crews, who was cleared of racial motivation by an outside investigation, is stepping into a new position as assistant to the city manager, according to the Root. Both him and Beane deny any wrongdoing.