Michigan woman defends pulling gun on Black family in viral video

Jul 10, 2020 at 4:21 pm
click to enlarge Jillian Wuesternberg in an interview with WXYZ-7. - WXYZ
Jillian Wuesternberg in an interview with WXYZ-7.

The white woman who pulled a gun on a Black mother and her daughters is defending her actions, claiming she thought she was going to die.

In a 15-minute interview with WXYZ-7, Jillian Wuesternberg said she was “terrified” when Takelia Hill and her three children approached her car after she had an argument with them in the parking lot of a Chipotle in Orion Township.

Instead of leaving in the safety of her car, Wuesternberg pulled a gun from a holster on her hip and pointed it at Hill and her children.

“Get the fuck back!” Wuesternberg yelled. “Back the fuck up!”

Wuestenberg described herself as outgoing and friendly and said she is not racist.

“My terror is just exponentially greater than it was then, looking back seeing how in danger I really was,” Wuesternberg told WXYZ. “Within moments, a second or two, I had multiple people within two feet of me and I just remember thinking I’m not going home tonight.”

Wuesternberg said she recalls thinking, “I’m about to die, and I don’t want to die.”

Wuestenberg and her husband Eric Wuesternberg, who also pulled a gun, were charged with felonious assault, which carries a maximum penalty of five years in prison. In Michigan, it’s illegal to point a gun at someone unless there is an imminent threat of death or great bodily harm.

Police and prosecutors said Wuestenberg could have left in her car but decided to escalate the already tense situation by staying and pulling out a gun.

"She was able to get into the vehicle," Hill’s attorney Christopher Quinn Quinn told WXYZ. "They were able to drive off. They didn't choose to drive off. They actually almost hit my client with their van. And then jumped out like Bonnie and Clyde with guns pointed at them. They were going to make sure it was understood they were the ones in charge."

Quinn also noted that the Hill family wasn’t armed.

"I don’t believe that the threat, the perceived threat, was realistic because one group of people were armed and the other was not," he said.

The family, he said, has been traumatized.

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