FACT CHECK: Did Shoppers Wear KKK Hoods At A Mini Mart Owned By A Family Involved In A Recent Alabama Brawl?

Christine Sellers | Fact Check Reporter

A video shared on Facebook claims shoppers wore Ku Klux Klan hoods at an Alabama mini-mart purportedly owned by a family involved in a recent riverfront brawl.

Verdict: False

The video includes photos of two separate 2020 incidents involving shoppers in Santee, California and Colorado, according to NBC Palm Springs, The Washington Post, and the New York Post, respectively.

Fact Check:

A GoFundMe page for Reggie Ray, a man who assisted a dock worker during a recent brawl on the Montgomery Riverfront, has raised over $270,000, according to the Daily Beast. The brawl occurred after a group of boaters refused to move their pontoon and allegedly attacked the dock worker, NBC News reported.

“The family who got beat up in Montgomery, Alabama owns a grocery store and look at what they’re doing now in the grocery store Fam,” the Facebook video’s caption purports. The video, liked over 11,000 times, includes photos of shoppers wearing Ku Klux Klan hoods while shopping for groceries.

The claim that the photos show shoppers inside an Alabama mini-mart is false, however. The first two photos that appear in the video stem from an NBC Palm Springs article reporting on an incident where a man wore a Ku Klux Klan hood while shopping inside a Vons grocery store in Santee, California. The man said the hood was not meant to be a racial statement after being questioned by police, The Washington Post reported.

The man also expressed frustration over being told what he could and couldn’t do as a result of the COVID-19 pandemic, the outlet indicated.

Similarly, a third photo included in the Facebook video stems from a May 2020 New York Post article covering an incident where a man wore a Ku Klux Klan hood inside a City Market grocery store in Dillon, Colorado. (RELATED: Viral Video Falsely Claims To Show Muslim Refugees Terrorizing New York)

Likewise, protests of Vasser’s Mini Mart have ensued following a recent brawl on the Montgomery Riverfront, according to the Selma Times-Journal. Chase Shipman, the owner of Vasser’s Mini Mart, was allegedly involved in the brawl, also according to the outlet.

Shipman purchased Vasser’s Mini Mart from his mother, Missy Calvert, in June 2023, the Selma-Times Journal reported in a previous article.

Check Your Fact has contacted the Montgomery Police Department, NBC Palm Springs, The Washington Post, and the New York Post for comment and will update this piece accordingly if one is received.

Christine Sellers

Fact Check Reporter