Black driver and his son are ‘ambushed’ by a white man who chased them on horseback while carrying a rope and yelling ‘these are Texas roads’
James Ragland shared on Facebook that a white man on horseback threatened him and his son with a rope in Marshall, Texas, on August 5
Ragland said his son was horrified by the man making threatening gestures – The man blocked the road with his horse as he drove to relative’s home
He yelled that ‘these are Texas roads’ before Ragland sped off, while leaving the relative’s home later that day, the man reportedly chased them yelling the same admonishments
Once at a safe distance, Ragland pulled over and snapped photos of the man, who he later identified as Grant Williams. He later reported the incident to the local sheriff’s office
Authorities in Marshall are yet to take action
James Ragland said he and his son, Judah, had a ‘terrifying experience – a terroristic threat from a white man with a rope’.
Ragland, who is a former columnist for Dallas Morning News, shared details of the August 5 incident in multiple Facebook posts.
According to the father-of-two, he was dropping off his nephew at a relative’s house on Floyd Evans Road in Elysian Fields, just south of Marshall, Texas, when they came upon a family on horseback: two children and two adults.
As Ragland approached them with his car, one man, who Ragland later identified as Grant Williams, steered his horse directly in their vehicle’s path.
‘These are Texas roads,’ said the man while staring at his California licence plates: Ragland said the man [on horseback, holding the rope] told them as he blocked the road while they were driving to a relative’s home
Ragland said the other family members went past the car, but the ‘guy just stopped in front of our car and glared at us’.
‘Then, he turned the horse sideways to more completely block the road, and he turned to face us down – I kid you not – like a gunman in the Wild West,’ Ragland said, adding that his son and nephew grew more nervous as the events unfolded.
‘I’m perplexed, but not yet alarmed. But then the guy guides his horse to the driver’s side and stops. I glance over and he’s just staring me down. I roll the window down, thinking he had something to say, but he just sizes us up. I finally say, “Nice horse.”
‘”Thank ya,” he mumbles. Then he blurts out: “These are Texas roads,” Ragland wrote, noting that he then asked the man what he meant.
“These are TEXAS roads,” he said louder,’ Ragland wrote. The man then pointed out that Ragland’s rental car had California license plates.
On their return trip the same still with the rope, later identified as Grant Williams, chased them with his horse while holding the rope and making threatening gestures as they sped away
Once he dropped his nephew off, Ragland and his son embarked on the road again. This time the man chased them with his horse while holding the rope and making threatening gestures as they sped away
‘”It’s a rental,” I shot back. And without missing a beat, the guy declared loudly again, “BUT THESE ARE TEXAS ROADS!”‘ Ragland wrote.
He said he then asked the man: ‘What the efff does that mean?’
At that point, the man reached back and Ragland thought he was reaching for a gun, which prompted Ragland to ease forward and speed away while the man was ‘still yelling and making threatening gestures’.
Ragland then dropped his nephew off at his relative’s home and a short time later he and his son left the home and traveled along the same road where they spotted the man again.
This time, the man ‘charges from his property on the north side and runs right out to our car, and for one frightening moment I thought he was going to dart in front of us’.
‘But as I sped up to avoid him, he pulled alongside our car and chased us for a mile while yelling and throwing the f… you sign initially before reaching for something on his right side,’ Ragland said.
Ragland said during the whole ordeal his son was begging him to drive faster along the road with the ‘angry white dude on horseback in full pursuit’.
‘When I got several hundred yards in front, I stopped the car – with Judah going berserk because he thought the guy was going to shoot at us – and I snapped a few pictures on my iPhone,’ Ragland said.
He later contacted the Harrison County Sheriff’s Office and reported the incident.
Ragland managed to pull over after the man chased them down the road and snap a few photos of the guy, Ragland said he reported the incident to the local sheriff’s office, but is still awaiting official action
But three days later, Ragland shared another Facebook post that claimed the sheriff’s office had not taken the matter seriously.
‘I’ve learned a lot in short order about how injustice manifests itself culturally and institutionally. Since the #HarrisonCountySheriff’s office won’t do its job, I will take other legal steps to protect the public, and hold an untruthful and unrepentant #GrantWilliams accountable,’ Ragland wrote.
In that post, Ragland shared a photo of Williams sitting on a horse with a Confederate flag draped over its back.
‘The fine citizens of Elysian Fields and innocent interlopers who might find themselves in the area deserve to know what he looks like for their own safety,’ Ragland said.
Authorities from the sheriff’s office said Ragland would have to come into the police station to make an official police report.
Ragland has not yet filed an official police report but has called the sheriff’s office several times asking for them to investigate his concerns.
The sheriff’s office says they won’t do anything until Ragland who lives 2 hours away comes in to make a report. Furthermore, they have spoken to Williams who denies anything happened.