Black FedEx driver chased and shot at by father and son
A black FedEx delivery driver in Mississippi, D’Monterrio Gibson, alleges that a white father and son duo chased and shot at him while he was making deliveries. Comparing his case to that of Ahmaud Arbery, a black man who was murdered while jogging, Gibson and his attorney are demanding that the two men face hate crime charges.
Gibson, 24, says he was delivering a FedEx package in Brookhaven, about 55 miles (88km) south of Jackson, Mississippi on Jan. 24 when his van was cut off by a pickup truck as he was pulling out of a driveway. He swerved around it, then encountered a man in the street pointing a gun at him and gesturing for him to pull over. Gibson said he ducked behind the steering wheel as the man opened fire. Bullets damaged the van and packages inside. Though not hit, Gibson says the ordeal has left him shaken.
Gibson said the two men, identified as father Gregory Charles Case and son Brandon Case, then pursued him, firing more shots, until he got onto the highway to return to the FedEx distribution center. “I feel it’s my responsibility to speak up, because [Arbery] didn’t survive to speak up for himself,” says Gibson.
Similar to that case, the suspects in Mr. Gibson’s incident are a father and son. In his complaint to police, Gibson said he was not taken seriously until he and his manager went to the station the next day to show them the bullet holes in the van.
He was wearing a full FedEx uniform and was driving a marked rental van when it happened.
Eight days would pass before the Cases were arrested. They have since been released on bail. Brandon Case, 35, was charged with feloniously attempting to cause bodily injury with a firearm and a deadly weapon by shooting at an occupied vehicle with Gibson inside, an affidavit provided by the Brookhaven Municipal Court states. Gregory Case was charged with unlawfully and feloniously conspiring with Brandon Case to commit aggravated assault by attempting to cause bodily injury to Gibson, a second affidavit states.
Gibson and his lawyers say that the charges were too lenient, and called for a federal hate crime investigation. They also called for the Brookhaven Police to hand over the investigation to an outside agency and for the charges to be upgraded to attempted murder. Lawyer Carlos Moore believes his client was targeted by the Cases, who are White, “because he is African-American,”
“This man is fully, gainfully employed by FedEx, doing his job, and still you haul off and try to chase him and cut him off and shoot him multiple times”, said Moore.”It’s sickening to be that hateful and that racist and that full of just malice just because of the color of his skin, ” Moore said in a statement to CNN. “He was simply doing his job as a FedEx driver in full uniform when he was chased and assaulted by gunfire.“
Gibson said he was asked to continue driving the same route the day after the attack and suffered panic attacks. He was placed on unpaid leave by FedEx.
“FedEx takes situations of this nature very seriously, and we are shocked by this criminal act against our team member,” the company said.
Gibson on Friday said he was on unpaid leave after the incident, though the company was paying for therapy. Moore said later Friday that FedEx had reinstated his pay retroactively beginning Jan. 31.
Three white men, including a father and son, were sentenced last month to life in prison for the 2020 murder of Mr. Arbery, a black man in Georgia. Jury selection is underway in the trial for federal hate crime charges against them.