Woman reportedly arrested after harassing two women for speaking Spanish
A woman was reportedly arrested after being confronted by another woman in a Colorado grocery store for allegedly harassing two Hispanic women.
In a viral video that has garnered over 650,000 views as of Thursday afternoon, a woman identified as Kamira Trent can be seen confronting Linda Dwire in a City Market grocery store on Monday for harassing two women who had been speaking Spanish.
“I’m calling the cops. You leave these women alone! Get out!” Trent can be seen telling Dwire as the two women from Mexico, Fabiola Velasquez and Isabel Marin, stand nearby.
“You come from a generation that’s destroying this country,” Dwire responded.
“No I do not. I have respect. You do not harass people,” Trent said.
“You will lose your country,” Dwire said as she pointed her finger at Trent. “You know what, you will lose this country.”
Trent and Dwire later walk away as a store employee can be seen following the two women out of the store.
“You do not harass Hispanic women!” Trent can be heard saying.
According to a report BuzzFeed News published on Wednesday, Dwire was later arrested and taken to the Garfield County Jail after Trent reported her to the police. There, Dwire was reportedly charged with two counts of bias-motivated harassment. She has since been released on bond and is scheduled to appear in court in next month.
Velasquez told BuzzFeed that the conflict began when she and Marin were confronted by Dwire for speaking in Spanish. She claims Dwire interrupted her and Marin’s conversation to ask if they enjoyed living the United States.
Velasquez said when she and Marin said yes in response, Dwire told them to learn English. Velaquez, who had been at the market with her children, also said Dwire was aggressive during the exchange and constantly put her hand in her face.
Trent told the publication she overheard Dwire in a nearby aisle telling the two women: “You’re in America. You’re in my country. You can’t speak Spanish here. You need to speak English if you’re going to be in America.”
“She just got angrier and angrier. I was trying to get her away from the two women, but she wasn’t going to leave them alone,” Trent told the outlet. “What she said and the way she said it was wrong.”
After Trent and Dwire’s exchange spiraled into a yelling match, Trent called the local police.
Carlos Cornejo, the officer who arrived at the scene, wrote in his report that he heard Dwire yelling “something to the effect of ‘this is what is wrong with our country’ and ‘they should not be speaking Spanish here’” upon his arrival, according to BuzzFeed.
Dwire said in an interview with BuzzFeed News that the confrontation had “nothing to do with race.”
“It’s a patriotic thing,” Dwire said. “When people come to my country, they need to love it enough to speak English.”
But Velasquez believes otherwise.
“If she wasn’t racist, she wouldn’t care what language we would speak,” Velasquez said. “It baffles me because I don’t understand what concept they have about us [immigrants]. What are we trying to take away from them exactly?”