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Black Reporter Obtains Protective Order Against White Man Who Threatened Him

Duke Carter.
Duke Carter.

A Black reporter who was threatened in the wake of the shooting of two white journalist has obtained a protective order against a Virginia man, according to The Roanoke Times.

Duke Carter, a reporter for WSLS Channel 10, was granted a protective order Wednesday against Donald “Donnie” Visel Jr. Carter. Visel is accused of making a shooting gesture at Carter while he was out on assignment.

Court records state Carter was working on a story about a fundraiser for Vicki Gardner, the survivor of the shooting that killed WDBJ reporter Alison Parker and cameraman Adam Ward. He heard Visel, whose truck had been circling the parking lot, call him Frankie Jupiter, a former WDBJ reporter. Carter thought Visel had mistaken him for someone else.

“I’m not Frankie Jupiter.” Carter said.

Visel responded by saying, “Oh, you’re right. You’re dead,” and then made a shooting gesture.

“I was frozen in fear,” Carter said. “This was the exact same road where Alison and Adam were shot.”

Several Black reporters have said they received threats after Vester Lee Flanagan, a disgruntled former employee, killed Parker and Ward in an incident that was captured on video. Flanagan later uploaded the video to social media.

Kelly Zuber, WDBJ news director, said the station continues to get threats and has stepped up security. She said one threat against a Black reporter who had just joined the station was “as racist as you could possibly get.”

Carter said he took the threat seriously and police later sent extra patrols to the WSLS station. Carter decided to request a protective order because charges were not field against Visel. Visel has an extensive criminal record. He has been convicted on drug, alcohol and trespassing charges and is currently facing assault charges. The protective order bars Visel from owning a gun for two years and orders him to have no contact with Carter. Visel admitted remorse for his comments.

“I just want to apologize to the man,” Visel said.

Judge Randal Duncan admonished Visel for his behavior.

“How could you be so callous?” he asked.

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