While one frequently gets to see viral videos of some privileged but often achingly clueless people committing jaw-droppingly racist actions on social media, it’s rare that you get to see the consequences of their actions force them into accountability.
So it’s good to follow up on the story of the woman dubbed “Pool Patrol Paula,” the South Carolina woman who seemed to have missed the news about segregation and discrimination no longer being allowed at public pools and acted like she was the enforcer of Jim Crow regulations out of the 1950s when she assaulted a 15-year-old black teen who dared to swim in “her” neighborhood community pool.
The 38-year-old woman, whose real name is Stephanie Sebby-Strempel, told a group of children who had been invited to the neighborhood community pool by a friend who lived nearby that “they did not belong at the pool, and they had to leave” in a well-publicized incident in June.
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Witness reports say that the group was respectful and responded with “yes, ma’am” when asked to leave, but that “Sebby-Strempel continued antagonizing the kids as they left, calling them “punks,” and using racial slurs against them.”
Apparently, that was not enough for the newly alpha woman, who then proceeded to start hitting one in the group, with her attack on a 15-year-old boy captured on video as evidence. According to the sheriff’s office, the full video shows Sebby-Strempel hitting her victim at least three times as he exited the pool area.
Investigators determined that Sebby-Strempel was the aggressor in this unprovoked assault and that the victim “didn’t respond or retaliate to being hit,” despite the woman’s efforts to trigger a reaction.
The victim was checked out by emergency medical personnel and determined to require no immediate care, but when deputies showed up on Monday at Sebby-Strempel’s home to charge and arrest her for the assault, her violent tendencies erupted again.
“According to the sheriff’s office, Sebby-Strempel pushed one detective into a wall, injuring his knee, and then bit a second detective on the arm, breaking the skin.”
Sebby-Strempel’s tempestuous reaction resulted in her being booked on one count of third-degree assault and two counts of assaulting a law enforcement officer.
Now, the local ABC News affiliate, WCIV, is reporting that “Pool Patrol Paula” has pled guilty to third-degree assault and battery, a misdemeanor, and was fined $1,000 by a local court. Sebby-Strempel had earlier lost her job as an independent skin care consultant with Rodan + Fields over her behavior that day.
The mother of Sebby-Strempel’s victim, Deanna RocQuermore, felt vindicated by the decision.
“No child including mine or anybody else’s ever, ever, deserves that type of abuse or treatment,” RocQuermore said. “And to be struck not once, not twice, but three times by someone that is upset because of the color of someone’s skin, and they don’t belong at their swimming pool.”
Hopefully, the sentence received by “Pool Patrol Paula” will serve as sufficient deterrent for future overzealous racists to keep them from expressing their inner rage publicly on innocent people.
You can watch a video of the original incident in the clip below.
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