Two women engaged in a heated argument in a Rifle, Colorado, grocery store. The woman identified as Kamira Trent confronting Linda Dwire in a City Market grocery store Monday afternoon. Dwire was apparently harassing two Hispanic women for speaking Spanish. “I’m calling the cops. You leave these women alone! Get out!” Trent shouts at Dwire in the clip. “You come from a different generation than I do and you’re going to lose it,” Dwire responds, pointing angrily at Trent. “No I do not. I have respect, You do not harass people,” Trent shoots back. “You will lose your country,” Dwire says, as she begins to back up and walk away toward her cart. “You know what, you will lose this country.” Trent follows her and the women continue to shout at one another.
“You do not harass Hispanic women!” Trent can be overheard yelling as a store employee begins to follow her and Dwire.
BuzzFeed News reported that Trent eventually called the police. Dwire was arrested and charged with harassment, a representative from Garfield County Sheriff’s Office confirmed to HuffPost. Fabiola Velasquez, told BuzzFeed that she and her friend Isabel Marin, who are both from Mexico, were grocery shopping and speaking to each other in Spanish when Dwire asked them if they lived in the country and enjoyed it. When they said yes, Dwire responded by telling them they should learn English. “She said that if we’re living in this country we didn’t need to speak Spanish, only English,” Velasquez wrote in Spanish on Facebook, which was translated by HuffPost staff.
“I never thought this would happen to me, I always watched these videos online that riled me up, and when it happened to me I felt frozen and unable to respond.” Velasquez also wrote in her Facebook caption. Velasquez, who has lived in the United States for eight years and who was accompanied by her children at the time of the incident, told BuzzFeed that Dwire became aggressive and kept putting her hand in Velasquez’s face.
Trent told the outlet that she intervened after she overheard Dwire speaking to the women in a nearby aisle. “She just got angrier and angrier,” Trent said. “I was trying to get her away from the two women, but she wasn’t going to leave them alone.” Trent said she called the police after her exchange with Dwire turned into a screaming match.
Dwire said in an interview with BuzzFeed that the confrontation had “nothing to do with race.” “It’s a patriotic thing,” Dwire said. “When people come to my country, they need to love it enough to speak English.” Velasquez, however, didn’t buy that excuse.
“If she wasn’t racist, she wouldn’t care what language we would speak,” Velasquez said. “It baffles me because I don’t understand what concept they have about us [immigrants]. What are we trying to take away from them exactly?”
This was updated with information from the Garfield County Sheriff’s Office.