A Mississippi furniture store owner has admitted to dropping the n-word at Black customers after being caught on camera. Now he’s defending his actions.
A customer sent a video of an altercation that erupted outside Hometown Furniture in Southaven, Mississippi, on Saturday, May 18, to WREG. Witnesses said it shows Terry Pace, who owns the store, cursing at and using the n-word to Black patrons.
It’s not clear what exactly led to the volatile moment.
“I don’t care what they say. I did what I felt like was right,” Pace told a WREG reporter who arrived at his home after he shuttered his store for the day on Monday, May 20. “You weren’t there. You didn’t hear it. You didn’t hear all the stuff I heard.”
He claimed he was provoked and attacked, and left with a black eye. He also admitted to using the n-word, seemingly as a result.
“I called the n-word when it was over with. When it was all over with, and they kept mouthing off to me. Yes, ma’am, I used the n-word,” he adds.
Police were called to the scene but no report was filed.
However, those working in shops in the plaza shared with Hometown Furniture say Pace’s racist remarks are nothing new.
“He was like, ‘No. I don’t finance, because the only people that want to get furniture financed is the colored. And they don’t pay their bills.’ Yes. This is what he told me, and I let that go,” said Marvin Clark, who owns a business in the plaza.
Additionally, the woman who owns the plaza property states they’ve been flooded with complains about Pace, despite him only occupying the space since March.
Property manager Radhya Spencer told the news outlet she hopes the incident does not push away other customers.
“We need to come out here and support the businesses. We need to come out here and support Southaven and uplift it. We don’t plan on having him stay,” Spencer said.
She also noted there are no plans to renew when the lease is up for Pace’s store in June.