Jonathan Pentland, a United States Army sergeant first class, is the subject of an investigation into a viral video from Columbia, South Carolina.
According to now-deleted images on his unit’s Facebook page, Pentland is stationed at Fort Jackson in Columbia. On Tuesday, April 13, 2021, a day after the video was posted online, social media users named Pentland.
Twitter, I’m told this super douche lives in The Summit in Columbia, South Carolina. If you recognize him, please DM me — I want to make sure the name I have is accurate before I blast it all over social media. pic.twitter.com/LYAVzL2FaE
Pentland is seen pushing, abusing, and shouting at a young Black male named Deandre in the Columbia neighborhood where he lives in the video below.
In the video, Pentland can be heard asking Deandre to leave the neighborhood and interrogating him when he claims to live there as well.
According to the woman who posted it, the incident occurred on a public sidewalk in the Lakes at Barony Place development in Columbia’s Summit neighborhood. Pentland also allegedly broke Deandre’s phone, according to her.
Fort Jackson Commanding General Milford Beagle Jr. tweeted after hundreds of Twitter users sent the video to accounts affiliated with Fort Jackson, many accusing Pentland of racist conduct and asking if the Army condoned it. We’ll get to the bottom of this as soon as possible. Said, “This is by no means condoned by any service member. We will get to the bottom of this ASAP.”
On April 14, the Richland County Sheriff’s Department announced on Twitter that Sheriff Leon Lott, “will meet with elected officials and reps of various organizations today to discuss the Summit incident. We are aware of the disturbing video and have taken this incident seriously. After the meeting, more information will be released publicly.”
On Facebook, the sheriff’s department said, “Sheriff Lott realizes the importance of putting out correct information quickly as there has been a lot of incorrect information distributed through Facebook and other social media. We want to ensure the community knows this incident has been a priority for our Department. The video in itself is very disturbing and has helped tremendously in our investigation. More information will be provided when it becomes available.”
Sheriff Leon Lott will be meeting with elected officials and representatives of various organizations today to discuss…
Shirell Johnson, a Columbia woman, posted the video on Facebook, saying she was walking around the neighborhood with a friend, Vinnetta Yvonne Knight Osborne, on Monday night, April 12, 2021, when she witnessed the incident.
The three-minute viral video does not reveal what prompted Pentland to approach the young Black man on a Columbia sidewalk.
“Go away right now,” Pentland tells Deandre at the outset. Deandre tells Pentland to call the cops, but Cassie Pentland, Pentland’s mum, says they’ve already been called. Deandre was “picking fights” with people in the area, according to the couple.
“What is it that you are doing here?” Pentland then asks. “Walking,” Deandre responds. “Then walk,” Pentland continues. When Deandre says he’s going back to his place, Pentland’s wife interrupts and says, “Well, you’ve been here for like 15 minutes now,” and both Pentlands tell him to keep walking. Pentland says, “Walk away.” “Right now, get out. Do you need help? I’m delighted to assist.” Pentland then claims he didn’t hit Deandre.
In a Facebook post, Johnson said the video was taken by a “young lady,” Shadae, and given to her to post online. Before Monday night, Johnson, Shadae, and a classmate had never met Deandre. Shadae McCallum, the woman who shot the video, also shared it on Twitter.