On Tuesday, September 11th, a video was shared on Facebook which showed a woman screaming at someone behind the wheel of a car as he was recording the interaction. The video quickly went viral, amassing over 1 million views, and as of the next day, she was let go from her job as a park attendant in Texas.
The inciting incident occurred on August 25th at Cedar Breaks in Georgetown, Texas, not too far from the capital, Austin. According to Chris Hampshire, the man in the car, the gate attendant, later identified as Judine Reed, tried to detain him because he allegedly tried to drive out of the park the wrong way. As you can see in the video, she is on the phone with the police screaming and saying she’s being run over, even though Hampshire’s car is stationary the entire time.
Two Park Rangers heard the radio broadcast of the incident and went to check on Reed, but could not find any injuries on her person or damage to the vehicle. Likewise, officers who reviewed the video recording determined there was no probable cause that Hampshire had committed the alleged assault on Reed.
Judine repeatedly yells, “Mike, Mike!” throughout the video and tells Hampshire he’ll be going to jail for whatever crime he’s guilty of–possibly driving in the wrong direction, or nothing at all.
After leaving the park, Chris Hampshire was pulled over by cops, who at the time were concerned he had committed assault. Once he showed them the video, they let him go without any charges.
Hampshire posted the video on Facebook to warn others of what could happen by “steer[ing] down the wrong exit at Lake Georgetown.” He wrote that he “corrected myself immediately when I saw the sign, backed up and was going out the right exit … this park attendant happened to be outside and told me she was calling the cops over that … I told her she cannot legally hold me here, not an officer nor did I do anything illegal … situation ensued, that’s when I started recording.”
Randy Cephus, the deputy director of public affairs for the park wasn’t sure why the altercation happened, but apparently determined it was “a misunderstanding of the entry and exit of the facilities.”
“She was not fired. We got to a mutual agreement not to renew her contract, which was coming up, and that it was best to part ways,” said Randy Cephus. She was a contract worker with the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers, employed at the time as a park attendant.
Meanwhile, it’s not likely this ex-employee will be forgotten soon. Memes of “Mike!” have been popping up all over the web, including on the Cedar Breaks Park Facebook Page.