PITTSBURGH (KDKA) – Multiple people are facing criminal charges after a video of an assault at a gas station went viral on social media.
Pittsburgh Police say multiple people now face criminal charges after a fight on the 2500 block of Brighton Road on Friday just before 7 p.m.
Police say the fight occurred between the men who own the Exxon gas station and two female customers.
On Saturday, protestors surrounded the Pittsburgh gas station, shutting down the business after footage of the fight went viral.
KDKA’s Chris Hoffman reports the protestors say they were upset about the fight that was caught on camera.
A few dozen people are protesting a gas station at the corner of Marshall Avenue and Brighton Road in Marshall-Shadeland after a fight yesterday between gas station employees and customers. pic.twitter.com/BxU7XfDlTv
— Chris Hoffman (@NewsmanChris) September 21, 2019
Protestors are also on the scene at an Exxon on McKnight Road.
One lane of traffic is blocked, causing congestion.
According to police, their investigation revealed that a verbal confrontation began over spilled gas.
The customers said a pump malfunctioned, and when they asked for a refund, police say they were reportedly denied one.
The video, police say, shows the owners striking one of the women in the back of the head multiple times.
The employee is also reportedly shown grabbing one of the women by the hair and dragging her across the pavement.
The victims, who did not want to be identified, spoke with KDKA’s Chris Hoffman.
“It was just me and my sister against all those grown men,” the 27-year-old said. Her sister is 25.
“There’s no way that you should be able to put your hands on females like this and still be able to run a business. Especially in our community where I grew up.”
When police looked at surveillance footage, they say the women initiated the confrontation inside before it moved outside.
Police say they recommend the owners and employee be charged with assault. If the DA determines the charges should be upgraded to aggravated assault, police say they’ll amend the paperwork.
In a press release, police called the video “disturbing.”
“Calling me ‘animal,’ the victim said. “Saying, ‘if you want to act like an animal, I’m going to treat you like an animal,’ as they were pulling my hair trying to pull me out of the store.”
ExxonMobile released a statement to KDKA. A media relations advisor for the company told KDKA’s Chris Hoffman:
ExxonMobil does not tolerate any form of discrimination or harassment by any company representative.
ExxonMobil’s global policies promote diversity and inclusion and prohibit any form of discrimination or harassment in any company workplace, anywhere around the world.
ExxonMobil does not own or operate any retail fuels stations in the United States, but we are aware of the situation and take these matters very seriously.
Exxon and Mobil stations are supplied by authorized independent branded wholesalers who either operate the stations directly or have a contractual relationship with an independent owner/operator.