Crime

Woman arrested following recorded racist rant

Tara Belcher
Tara Belcher

A Myrtle Beach woman was arrested following a racist rant that was caught on video during this year’s Atlantic Beach Bikefest, according to a police report.

Tara Lynn Belcher, 28, was charged with third-degree assault and battery and simple possession of marijuana, according to Myrtle Beach Jail records.

Belcher was arrested following the incident, which occurred May 25, and released from the Myrtle Beach Jail on May 26 on a $1,401 surety bond, according to jail records.

Officers were initially called about 1 p.m. May 25 to a parking lot in the 1200 block of North Ocean Boulevard for a report of a robbery, which was later determined to be a false claim, according to the report.

Officers said Belcher told them she had just been fired from Rent Me Superstore, which was across the street from the parking lot, after she got into an argument with some customers and used racial slurs.

Belcher said after she was fired she was upset and walked across the street to wait for a taxi to pick her up, according to the report. Belcher said a black man came up to her on a motorcycle and began recording her on his phone.

Belcher told police that the man, who was later identified as the victim in the incident, spit on her, punched her in the face, pushed her to the ground, and kicked her, according to the report. She also told police she thought he took her cellphone. Police later determined these to be false claims.

Authorities found the 22-year-old man a short time later, and he told police he had been a customer in the store at the time Belcher was fired and followed her across the street where he filmed her with his cellphone with the intention of posting the footage to social media, police said in the report.

The man told police he was talking to Belcher and asking her questions when she spit in his face, according to the report. The man told officers he spontaneously reacted and slapped Belcher across the face.

Authorities watched the video footage the man captured and it showed Belcher repeatedly using racial slurs to describe black people and him specifically, according to the report.

The man said Belcher also grabbed a hold of his dreadlocks and pulled a bunch of hair out of his head, police said.

After watching the video, police said they determined Belcher’s claims against the man were untrue, and she was arrested at that time.

The Sun News could not reach management at Rent Me Superstore to confirm Belcher’s termination from the store by Thursday morning.

Contact ELIZABETH TOWNSEND at 626-0217 or on Twitter @TSN_etownsend.

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