Charleston, S.C. (WCBD) – An active investigation is underway by the City of Charleston Police Department after local journalist Quintin Washington of Quintin’s Close-Ups was allegedly assaulted yesterday by kids selling palmetto roses downtown.
The City of Charleston Police Department has identified the two juveniles involved in yesterday’s event, but they have not yet been brought into custody.
The two juveniles were illegally selling palmetto roses downtown before the situation escalated to the kids knocking Washington’s phone out of his hands and allegedly physically assaulting him after comments were made about the two being in school.
The selling of palmetto roses on the street is illegal. To get a permit a person must complete a free business course through the city’s recreation department.
Lieutenant James Byrne says the city has four designated kiosks for selling the roses.
“They teach the kids how to make the roses and then they follow up with them. They make sure there’s always an adult with them, and they actually take orders for weddings and events like that,” added Byrne.
The number of participants in the Palmetto Artisans Program has been on the decline, as has the number of sellers on the street.
“We’ve actually seen a dramatic drop in the number of calls about palmetto rose sales, the number of complaints, and really the number of people selling has gone down markedly,” Byrne stated.
The Charleston Police Department says they know many of the kids that sell the roses downtown and are working with school resource officers to ensure they stay in school.
Quintin Washington declined an interview.