A Black sheriff's deputy on duty was deemed a threat by a security guard at an Ohio IRS office.
The security guard drew out his gun in an incident that can only be described as racially motivated.
Seth Eklund, the White security guard who felt his life was on the line, pulled a gun on Lucas County Sheriff's deputy Alan Gaston after the uniformed deputy refused to leave his service weapon in his vehicle.
Leaving your service weapon unattended in your vehicle while on duty is a violation of most law enforcement department procedures.
Gaston visited the IRS facility on May 31 to ask for a phone number after receiving a letter from the IRS.
That visit almost cost him his life.
Gaston was traumatized and recalled the incident with ABC 13.
"Basically preparing myself to be shot at that moment. Bracing for a shot in my back."
Surveillance footage shows Eklund following Gaston towards the elevators and trying to take him into custody with the gun drawn.
Are you kidding me😳 White security guard pulls gun & threatens to shoot a Black on duty uniformed police officer i… https://t.co/WYX3ZxVMdM— Qasim Rashid, Esq. (@Qasim Rashid, Esq.)1563226237.0
Gaston, who also works at the Sheriff's department as a defense tactics instructor, told the news outlet about not knowing how to respond to such a life-threatening moment.
"There's really no way to know how you're going to act when there's a gun pointed at you and when you think you're going to lose your life."
Toledo police arrived after responding to a 911 call from inside the IRS facility.
However the caller made no mention of the fact that the "armed Black man" was a uniformed Sheriff's deputy, further endangering Gaston's life.
@QasimRashid Not telling 911 that the black man with a gun was a police officer. He intentionally withheld this inf… https://t.co/bQy0U10GT8— Katherine George Chu (@Katherine George Chu)1563232634.0
Gaston added that the best way to de-escalate the situation was to simply walk away.
But his concern laid with the office employees.
"If I'm going to get shot, like I thought I was, it's not fair. They came in there to do their business."
Gaston and his wife filed a civil lawsuit against Eklund and the security guard company and are "seeking compensation after Gaston suffered emotional and psychological distress and lost wages."
@QasimRashid @TheOrlandoJones “Gaston and his wife have now filed a civil lawsuit against the security guard...” Take EVERYTHING!— LeMar McLean (@LeMar McLean)1563226709.0
Eklund is scheduled to appear in court next week after being charged with aggravated menacing.
@QasimRashid Add this to the things people cant do while black: being a uniformed Police Officer.— AbnormalNerd (@AbnormalNerd)1563229698.0
@QasimRashid That police officer learned that white man with gun, black man with gun, police officer or not, white… https://t.co/FIzQ5gdMbw— Myrtho --RESIST -VOTE BLUE 2020🌊🌊 (@Myrtho --RESIST -VOTE BLUE 2020🌊🌊)1563227324.0
@QasimRashid I guess blue lives only matter for white cops??? Wtf? This is why my husband who is licensed does not… https://t.co/n6tr1mlakt— Itsgoingbrown💋 (@Itsgoingbrown💋)1563233717.0
When asked what he would tell Eklund, Gaston told ABC 13:
"I would say 'Clearly your training is lacking and the fact that you went 0 to 100. Lethal force is unacceptable."
@QasimRashid Hopefully this incident gets turned over to the FBI and other authorities. This white security gaurd n… https://t.co/2IuoRZzYof— mikefly562 (@mikefly562)1563236445.0
@QasimRashid Disgusting. That security “officer” should be fired and tried for a crime.— BBDeepState (@BBDeepState)1563226602.0
@QasimRashid How does someone with that level of stupidity get hired to be a security guard in the first place?— Katiame (@Katiame)1563226992.0
@QasimRashid Was the "security guard" just modeling the racist behavior he sees from the leader of this country...??— caregiver... (@caregiver...)1563245068.0
If there ever was a need for a reminder about why NFL athletes protested during the national anthem, this was it.
Not even law enforcement is safe from racial profiling.
@QasimRashid @randombott This is why they kneel!— TenneyNaumer (@TenneyNaumer)1563242634.0
@QasimRashid DO NOT TRY TO TELL ME THERE IS NO REASON FOR KNEELING.— Kirk (@Kirk)1563252294.0
ABC 13 tried to reach Eklund for comment, but he has yet to respond.
The book A Black Man in the White House: Barack Obama and the Triggering of America's Racial-Aversion Crisis, available here, examines the role of the 2010 presidential election and the rise of White supremacy in its wake and the push to keep the stereotype of the "Black thug" or "scary Black man" alive is literally killing people.
"In this book Cornell Belcher presents stunning new research that illuminates just how deep and jagged these racial fault lines continue to be.... Given the heightened racial aversion as a consequence of the first non-white male living in the White House, the rise of Trump was a predictable backlash."
"The election of the nation's first Black president does not mean that we live in a post-racial society; it means that we are now at a critical historical tipping point demographically and culturally in America and this tipping point is indeed the wolf at the door for many anxious white Americans."
"The panicked response of the waning white majority to what they perceive as the catastrophe of a Black president can be heard in every cry to take back our country. This panic has resulted in the elevation of an overt and unapologetic racist as the nominee of one of America's major political parties."
"Let's be clear, as Belcher points out: there isn't any going back. America's changing population and the continued globalization of our marketplaces won't allow it. In order to compete and win the future, America must let go of the historic tribal pecking order and a system gamed to favor the old ruling white elite."