A video of a White woman in Illinois confronting and falsely accusing a Black bicyclist of trespassing on private property has gone viral.
Otis Campbell and his friends—Tamara and Caitlyn—were passing through a public pier at Tower Road Park on Monday when Irene Donoshaytis, of Northfield approached them.
Donoshaytis, 65—who was originally called "Karen" until she could be identified—claimed Campbell was on private property reserved exclusively for Winnetka residents and said that he needed "parking passes" to be there.
In one of several clips, Donoshaytis can be heard telling Campbell—who is African American:
"Maybe you want to kill me?"
A so-called 'Karen' told a black man he needed passes to walk along a public pier during a caught on video dispute… https://t.co/Ej2EWabXWm— Lorie Meacham (@Lorie Meacham)1597865326.0
Footage from the encounter was posted on Campbell's Facebook page in a post titled, "Irene the Racist," which you can see below.
In other footage from the same incident, a nearby staffer on the property corrected Donoshaytis and clarified that parking passes were only required for those entering the beach, not for the driveway that Campbell and his friends were using.
The female attendant said:
"So to get into the beach itself, to walk on the beach, you do have to have a pass. But to walk up and down this driveway and onto the pier, you don't need a pass."
When Campbell confirmed with the staffer if the road he was on was public, Donoshaytis emphatically maintained it wasn't—which contradicted what the staffer had just explained.
Donoshaytis continued to argue, telling Campbell:
""No, it's not public. It's for people who live in Winnetka, and we pay for it."
In response to Campbell laughing in disbelief over his encounter, Donoshaytis told him that it was "not so funny."
When Campbell said that he was "dying laughing," Donoshaytis continued:
"Are you crazy? Maybe you want to kill me."
Campbell asked if the reason for her concern was because he was Black, she said, "Yes," and then proceeded to ask if he was an "idiot."
Karen, will you please just take your psych meds https://t.co/56oeT6B6D2— J. Dharma Windham (@J. Dharma Windham)1597865642.0
The end of the clip shows Donoshaytis approaching the camera in an attempt to swat Campbell.
According to Newsflare, Campbell called the police following the incident and Donoshaytis was arrested on battery charges.
"They charged a racist White woman today with battery after she racially profiled us."
This was classic with a happy ending...the right person was detained by police. https://t.co/0PKUK7JFIl— Jason Post (@Jason Post)1597854539.0
Winnetka Police Chief Marc Hornstein said that if Donoshaytis is convicted, she could face a year in jail, plus fines.
Campbell's Facebook post stated that their court date was scheduled for August 31, 2020 at 9:00 a.m. and will take place at the Skokie Court House.