A Closer Look at the Unjust Arrest at Wisconsin’s Applebee’s 

by | Sep 8, 2023 | Latest, Social Justice | 0 comments

In a shocking incident that gripped the nation, Jermelle English Jr, a Black man from Wisconsin, faced a wrongful arrest at a local Applebee’s. An unfortunate case of mistaken identity led to this brutal episode, sparking widespread outrage across social media platforms. 

The Incident Unfolds 

The incident unfolded in July, when law enforcement officers from Kenosha, Wisconsin, barged into an Applebee’s, targeting English Jr. They mistook him for a suspect involved in a hit-and-run accident. A video capturing the scene went viral, showcasing English Jr. pinned to the ground, with his 1-year-old baby nearby, as the officers began hitting him repeatedly1

Misidentification and Charges 

English Jr. and the woman accompanying him, Shanya Boyd, were taken into custody and charged with disorderly conduct and resisting police. Boyd faced an additional charge for marijuana possession. The actual culprits, whom the police were pursuing, were later discovered hiding in the Applebee’s restroom2

Aftermath and Social Media Uproar 

The aftermath of this incident was equally tumultuous. Jennifer Harris, the on-duty manager at Applebee’s at the time, recounted the chaotic scene to CBS 58. She expressed her concern for the baby and English Jr., while also noting that pepper spray was used during the scuffle3

“It was a lot, I was worried for the baby first off, the baby and the gentleman, that was my first concern,” she said. 

Harris also mentioned an employee who tried to intervene, urging the police to stop their assault. However, the cops responded by threatening to arrest him too4

“One employee was trying to get the cops to stop punching him, he was like, ‘Hey, hey, stop, he’s on the ground, stop,’ and they pushed him, pushed my employee, and said, ‘One more word out of you and you’re arrested.'” 

Manager’s Dismissal 

In a shocking turn of events, Harris was fired by the restaurant chain after videos of the incident surfaced on social media. The management accused her of tarnishing the Applebee’s brand name. 

“They told me they can’t trust me and that I didn’t just ruin this Applebee’s name, I ruined all the Applebee’s in Wisconsin’s name by letting these videos get out,” she stated. “I’m not the one who recorded the videos nor let them out on the internet, so I don’t understand. My employees are trying to get the right story out, so how did we ruin the name of Applebee’s?” 

The Power of Social Media and Celebrity Influence 

The incident, fueled by social media traction, caught the attention of influential figures, including music mogul JAY-Z. Known for his contributions towards social justice, JAY-Z reportedly helped English Jr. secure a strong legal defense5


The incident at the Wisconsin Applebee’s serves as a stark reminder of the persistent racial disparities in our society. It underscores the power of social media to highlight social injustices and mobilize support. The episode has spurred a renewed call for police reform and accountability, and the fight for justice continues. 

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