Woman Assaulted by a City Employee; Jury Let Him Off

Megan LeBlanc, Writer

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A couple of years ago, during memorial weekend, a woman by the name of Camille Chavez was at a bar called Mr. Ricks accompanied by a friend. As the bartender served them their drinks, an obnoxious building inspector by the name of Christopher Olcott was deliberately and annoyingly backing into them. Chavez in the video was seen to be irritated and nudged him back with her hip. Getting mad, Olcott smashed his right elbow directly into her face which caused her to fall to the floor, unconscious, then Olcott began punching Chavez’ friend McCormick in the face, multiple times, without cease.

Image result for woman elbowed in face at the bar

This case had gone to trial, but did not receive any media attention until just last month when video surveillance was released to the public showing the incident. The jury overall decided 7-5 in favor of guilt. This sparked debates about whether the jury was acting within race-based voting, and being biased based on the ethnicity of the defendant. People think this because Chavez is a Mexican-American and Olcott is not only a city official, but also white, along with the majority of the jury on the case.

“The defense, he told the Tribune, painted the assailant as a “good, clean-cut, hardworking professional with a family — as opposed to two people who don’t come from this area and shouldn’t have come to this place in the first place.” (Los Angeles Times)

Chavez was ultimately not surprised, as she has experienced racial discrimination before, but this is not the case for the people who have seen the video, as they are outraged and currently doing everything they can to convict Olcott.

“This is not the first time in my life a man has done something really awful to me,” she said. “But it’s the first time there was an opportunity for justice to be served. I relied on the judicial system to do that and it didn’t. I think that hurts more than the initial event.” (Camille Chavez)