The highly polarizing midterm elections have begun. Already, news has circulated about numerous instances of violence and aggression at certain polling areas. At one North Carolina polling station, police were forced to arrest one man for brandishing a weapon and disturbing the peace.
According to initial reports, Derek Partee, a Republican activist, was at a polling station handing out information about the GOP campaign and party. He was hoping to help influence individuals coming out to vote early. At around 2:30 P.M., Partee, who is also a retired detective, was informed about a suspicious vehicle parked nearby the polling booths. Partee investigated the situation and discovered the individuals inside the car taking photographs of the polling booths, activists and voters.
In response, Partee approached the vehicle and began taking his own photographs of the car’s license plate. Suddenly, two suspects jumped out of the vehicle. The suspects, who were both white, allegedly began yelling racial slurs at Partee who is an African American. One of the individuals was brandishing a gun in his visible holster. A few moments later, another woman joined the men in berating Partee. All three suspects then entered the car and sped away. Partee immediately contacted the authorities.
Police quickly tracked down the vehicle. 28-year-old Jason Donald Wayne was arrested and taken to the Mecklenburg County Jail. He is being charged with communicating threats, going armed to terror people, ethnic intimidation and disorderly conduct. The other two suspects were also identified by police, but they were not arrested because they didn’t violate any laws.
The Charlotte-Mecklenburg Police have decided to set up patrols around the polling stations due to this recent incident.