Bouchard told reporters that the couple are from Independence Township and both have concealed pistol licenses. Deputies seized two handguns from the couple after they were detained.
Oakland County Sheriff Michael Bouchard speaks at a news conference, Thursday, July 2, 2020, in Pontiac, Mich., to confirm one felonious assault charge each has been filed against Eric and Jillian Wuestenberg, both of Independence Township, after a confrontation that resulted in pointing hand guns at Takelia Hill and her children after exiting a restaurant in Orion Township, a day earlier. (Todd McInturf/Detroit News via AP)
Credit: Todd McInturf
Credit: Todd McInturf
The Detroit News first reported on the three-minute video posted online that shows part of the interaction. Takelia Hill, who is Black, told the newspaper that it happened after the white woman bumped into Hill's teenage daughter as they were entering the fast-food restaurant.
The video footage starts after that, in the parking lot. A woman since identified as Jillian Wuestenberg is heard arguing with Hill and her daughters. Wuestenberg climbs into the vehicle, rolls down the window and says, "White people aren't racist," and, "I care about you," before the vehicle she was in starts to back away.
Her husband, who had led his wife to the vehicle, turns to the camera and asks, "Who ... do you think you guys are?" using an expletive.
Then, as someone is behind the vehicle, Jillian Wuestenberg jumps out and points a handgun in the direction of a person who's recording. She screams at people to get away from her and her vehicle. A woman shouts, "She's got a gun on me!" and urges someone in the parking lot to call the police.
Wuestenberg then lowers the gun, climbs into the passenger seat and the vehicle drives off.
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Cooper, the prosecutor, told The Associated Press that her office viewed the available video before filing charges.
"It is an unfortunate set of circumstances that tempers run high over, basically, not much of an incident," she said of what led to the confrontation.
"There's a lot of tension in our society, a lot of tension among folks and people with each other," Bouchard, the sheriff, said "I would just say this, we are asking and expect our police — and rightfully so — to deescalate every situation they possibly can, and we should be doing that. But I would say that needs to happen with us individually in our own lives and situations, that we interact with each other and deescalate those moments."
After the video surfaced, Eric Wuestenberg was fired from his job at Oakland University near Detroit, a spokesman said. He worked as a veterans support services coordinator, according to a university website.
"We have seen the video and we deem his behavior unacceptable," the university said in an emailed statement. "The employee has been notified that his employment has been terminated by the university."
Democratic U.S. Rep. Elissa Slotkin said in a statement that Eric Wuestenberg also had participated in one of her voluntary advisory boards, on veterans' issues. She said the conduct she saw in the video "is beyond