Editors note: New information has come to light correcting previous media posts. Law Enforcement Today was made aware that Rhynes Jr. was in fact NOT wearing a “Justice for Breonna Taylor” t-shirt at the time of the shooting, but rather a t-shirt that featured a combined picture of Muhammad Ali and Colin Kaepernick, with the word “freedom” written on it.
LOUISVILLE, KY– On Friday night, September 18th, a black man walked into a bar and shot three unsuspecting people at point blank range.
33- year-old Michael E. Rhynes Jr. walked into Bungalow Joe’s Bar and Grill, approached a table with two white men and one black man sitting at it, and began firing.
According to Joe Bishop, the restaurant owner, the shooter and the victims did not know each other, and had not even spoken before the attack.
“Nobody had ever seen this guy before,”
“It was a totally random act.”
This man shot and murdered three people in a Louisville bar last night indiscriminately. He was wearing a Justice for Breonna Taylor shirt….. https://t.co/UGfrtSqfZU
— Mrs. Freeman (@christinamae177) September 20, 2020
Police arrested Rhynes Jr. just after midnight on Saturday, when they found him crawling around in brush near the restaurant according to WDRB.
It was reported that he was smiling from ear to ear as he was being arrested.
Two of the men, Toreon Jermaine Hudson, 26, and William Scott Smallwood, 48, were pronounced dead at the scene, while Steven Matthew Head, 24, died from his injuries at University Hospital.
Apparently one of the victims was the fiancé of the bar manager and all three of the men worked together.
— eggslivesmatter brea (@brea55055) September 20, 2020
LOUISVILLE, KY – “There comes a time in life that you have to make a stand and you have to really prove your convictions and what you believe in. All good people need to denounce this. How can you justified (sic) injustice with more injustice?”
These are the words written on the Facebook page of Fernando Martinez, the Cuban-born co-owner of the Ole Restaurant Group.
His words were in response to the demands made of him and numerous other business owners in the Cuban community in Louisville.
They recently received a letter of demands from Black Lives Matter protestors in the district where he opened their newest restaurant, La Bodeguita de Mima. The area is known for its locally-owned shops and restaurants. Martinez said that in addition to the letter, he was confronted by protestors recently.
Louisville has been a hotbed of BLM activity since the death of Breonna Taylor earlier this year, after an alleged”no-knock” warrant served by the Louisville Police Department.
He called the demands “mafia tactics”.
Those demands came with a contract for obliging business owners to sign.
Here is an idea of what these protestors were looking for.
The Louisville Courier-Journal reports that the letter included:
– Adequately represent the Black population of Louisville by having a minimum of 23% Black staff;
– Purchase a minimum of 23% inventory from Black retailers or make a recurring monthly donation of 1.5% of net sales to a local Black nonprofit or organization;
– Require diversity and inclusion training for all staff members on a bi-annual basis;
– And display a visible sign that increases awareness and shows support for the reparations movement.
Yes, you read that correctly. They want businesses to put up signage saying that they support reparations among numerous outrageous “requests”.
The article also stated:
“According to a press release, members of the city’s Cuban community will meet outside the NuLu restaurant at 4 p.m. Sunday to support the immigrant-owned business, which ‘has been subject to vandalism and extortion in recent days.’
The release states that La Bodeguita de Mima was forced to close July 24 during a demonstration that shut down East Market Street, at which several protesters presented Martinez with the list of demands and said he ‘better put the letter on the door so your business is not f*cked with.’
The restaurant remained closed the next two days because ‘management and staff were concerned about safety,’ according to the release. ’30+ staff members (mostly immigrants) were unable to earn a paycheck.‘“
But, in typical fashion, Phelix Crittenden, an activist who works with Black Lives Matter Louisville, said the demands were “not meant to be a threat, but instead, were merely intended to start a conversation with owners about how their businesses can better reflect and support Black people”.
Yes, smashing flower pots in front of the stores and telling business owners that they need to comply are run the risk of having their businesses “f*cked with” is in no way threatening or intimidating.
According to the LCJ:
“Crittenden, who also founded the organization Blacks Organizing Strategic Success, said several NuLu business owners have volunteered to sign the contract created by the protesters and are open to discussing their roles in the gentrification of the area, which has undergone hundreds of millions of dollars in development in recent years.
‘NuLu is flourishing,’ Crittenden said. ‘To see that literal line in the sand, as soon as you cross the street, it’s very disturbing. NuLu doesn’t reflect the community they sit in and claim to incorporate and serve.'”
But the letter does more than just demand things. It goes so far as to blame the business owners for the plight of the black community.
“The residents of Louisville, Kentucky are standing strong, educated, and together to express the destruction your business has caused to low-income communities, specifically those with majority Black residents. We therefore demand representation and reparations in the NuLu business district of Louisville for the gentrification that has taken place.
Perhaps we need to look no further than Seattle.So much for those arrests that took place when police made sweeps through Seattle’s CHOP zone on July 1st. Reports indicate that some of those who were arrested in defiance of the orders to disperse were back on the streets shortly thereafter.https://twitter.com/komonews/status/1279045478500335617
According to reports, there were 44 people arrested during the sweep that took place during the early morning hours of July 1st in the zone once known as CHOP in Seattle.One of the people arrested, Rashyla Levitt, was said to have only been held for mere hours after her arrest during the sweep for charges of failure to disperse.https://twitter.com/choeshow/status/1278423724795052032
By July 2nd, Levitt was already taking to the streets once again to engage in protests, saying the following about her release:
While the charge was only a misdemeanor, many are concerned within the area that Levitt’s release is going to be that of a trend for those taken into custody during the CHOP clearing operation.Considering that those arrested on site during the sweep were among those refusing to leave (among other charges) – a expedient release could morph into an expedient reassembling of the miscreants.https://twitter.com/PatrickQuinnTV/status/1278769548192215041
Seattle Mayor Jenny Durkan, while having been the one responsible for clearing out CHOP weeks after it had formed and went unchecked until murders occurred, still managed to sneak in some pandering toward the lawless group that inhabited the area when commenting on the Seattle Police’s arrests that occurred on July 1st:
So even after weeks of assaults, vandalism, robberies, and murders – Seattle’s mayor is still looking to extend friendly consideration toward a group of people that seized several city blocks and terrorized residents in the area.https://twitter.com/MDee123456/status/1278451473345626115
City Attorney Pete Holmes said that of those who were arrested for misdemeanor crimes during the CHOP sweep, they’d be eligible to have their charges dropped if they participate in a “diversion program.