Cuban Democrat Accused of Racism by Democratic Ga. Rep. Erica Thomas Considers Filing a Defamation Suit

Erica Thomas and Eric Sparkes
Ga. State Rep. Erica Thomas (D) and Georgia resident Eric Sparkes (D). Screen grab via WSB-TV.

The Georgia man accused of racism and “verbal assault” by Democratic state lawmaker Erica Thomas is fed up with the controversy and is considering filing a defamation lawsuit against her.


CBS 46 reports:

In a statement Monday, Eric Sparkes told CBS46 he’s “in the process of exploring with attorneys a defamation lawsuit against her.”

The argument happened Saturday at a Publix in Mableton. Sparkes claims he simply pointed out to a shopper, whom he says he didn’t recognize as a state lawmaker, that she had too many items in the lane designated for shoppers with 10 items or fewer.

State Rep. Erica Thomas acknowledges she had too many items, but she said she explained to the man that she’s 9-months pregnant and has trouble standing for long periods of time. Both Thomas and Sparkes admit they exchanged words and both left the store.


After Thomas’s [Monday] news conference, Sparkes sent CBS46 the following statement:

“Ms. Thomas has taken an innocuous situation that began on my part to be about being inconsiderate and turned into a national case about race over night. Ms. Thomas accuses me of telling her to go back to wherever. Those words were never spoken. She backtracked slightly and now is changing her story. I am in the process of exploring with attorneys a defamation lawsuit against her.”


Thomas appeared at the Publix location on Saturday to talk about the alleged incident to reporters, but Sparkes – who says he is a Cuban Democrat – decided to show up, too, and things got heated:

During that interview with WSB-TV, Thomas backtracked on a key claim she initially made about what was said:

With the TV cameras rolling, Thomas repeatedly accused Sparkes of telling her to “go back” — and he denied using that language and said he was a Latino Democrat. In a subsequent interview with Channel 2 Action News, Thomas seemed to hedge her remarks.

“I don’t want to say he said, ‘Go back to your country,’ or ‘Go back to where you came from.’ But he was making those types of references is what I remember,” she told the station.


In a Monday presser, Thomas denied backtracking on her statement in any way, but comparison videos of how her story has evolved tell a different story:


Thomas’s attorneys have called on Publix to release any and all videos of the incident. The videos reportedly do not have audio.

— Based in North Carolina, Sister Toldjah is a former liberal and a 15+ year veteran of blogging with an emphasis on media bias, social issues, and the culture wars. Read her Red State archives here. Connect with her on Twitter. –


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