Two Terrebonne students facing hate crime charges after repeatedly saying n-word in video

“It’s disgusting, it’s terrible,” said Lt. Travis Theroit with Houma Police. “That’s absolutely [not] something that this police department nor this town condones.”
Published: Oct. 26, 2022 at 4:28 PM CDT
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HOUMA, La. (WVUE) - Two high school students have been arrested and accused of hate crimes after video circulated on social media of them using racial slurs on campus.

The two unidentified Terrebonne High School students, who are both white, face charges of inciting a riot, hate crimes, and cyberbullying.

In the video, the students are heard repeatedly using the n-word, referring to several Black students around them but not within earshot.

“It’s disgusting, it’s terrible,” said Lt. Travis Theriot with Houma Police. “That’s absolutely [not] something that this police department nor this town condones.”

Superintendent Bubba Orgeron says the video displays despicable language and thoughts.

“This type of behavior and disgusting display of content will never be tolerated by our school system,” Orgeron said in a statement.

FOX 8 has reviewed the video and has decided not to release it. Community members said they’re hurt and outraged by the incident but are happy the two students were dealt with swiftly.

“In my previous 16 years, there was nothing to this magnitude,” said Roosevelt Thomas, a former school board member. “I thought those days and time were gone, but evidently you have some people who still seem to have a different impression of people and want to call them different names.”

They said they hope this will serve as a wake-up call and facilitate more conversation in the community about the history of that slur and why the word should not be used.

“The word is being trivialized again,” said Wanda Ruffin-Triggs, a child advocate who is also a candidate for school board. “I think that parents of all cultures, mine included, need to talk with their children about the impact of this word, the background, the history of this word, and why we don’t want it used.”

Houma police say the investigation is ongoing, and ultimately it will be up to the district attorney’s office to accept or reject the charges.

“The most important thing, I think, it sends a message to the community, from the school standpoint that it won’t be tolerated and from law enforcement that it won’t be tolerated also,” said Jerome Boykin, President of the Terrebonne Parish chapter of the NAACP.