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CULTURE

Exclusive: Hero Neighbor, ‘Highlighter Man,’ Faces Eviction After Defending Minority Children

Highlighter Man Nick Kitchen
'Highlighter Man' Nick Kitchen in viral video (Photo: GoFundMe, https://www.gofundme.com/f/highlighter-man-nick-kitchen)

Shortly after defending a group of mostly black children in his apartment complex, Nicholas Kitchen, aka ‘Highlighter Man,’ is facing eviction, and a neighbor who filmed the incident is facing a lawsuit.

On June 20th, Nicholas Kitchen, who is now dubbed “Highlighter Man,” had an altercation with an unmarked security guard which quickly went viral on social media. The video became another example of over-policing of non-white individuals.

However, in this video, Nick stood up and defended a group of mostly non-white children from an angry, overzealous neighbor trying to stop the kids from playing. The incident was caught on camera by Samuel Lahn, who posted the initial videos showing Nick passionately explaining the situation on Twitter.

Lahn later took the time to speak to Nick concerning the situation. The tweets below of the incident displays the conversation between the two men.

While Nick has received wide applause online, he and Samuel have both been treated negatively by their Altitude 104 apartment complex since the incident came to public attention.

What Led to Nicholas Speaking Up

The viral incident took place at Altitude 104 Apartments in Pierce County, Washington; where Nick lives with his mother, two daughters, and pregnant fiancee. Nick detailed to Citizen Truth multiple instances where the individual off screen in the viral video complaining about the children complained previously about the children in the apartment complex — often speaking with staff in the on-site office. However, Nick states children in the apartment community stay away from the neighbor in question, in particular, avoiding his porch. “My puppy goes near the porch more than the kids,” he told Citizen Truth.
Nick also conveyed that the apartment complex didn’t have any issues during his residency prior to the neighbor in question arriving. He and several other parents in the complex recall a situation where dog defecation was thrown by the same individual at children, hitting at least one. During a video conversation with Nick, he recalled the man’s daughter calling one of the 13-year-old girls a “hoe.” Nick recalls this event happening in approximately April or May of this year. Kitchen would state that he is unaware whether Altitude 104 did anything about the complaints made against the neighbor regarding the specific incident.
The apartment complex has ethnic diversity among its tenants, with all parents working together to ensure children are monitored while they are playing. After conversing with his family and realizing the neighbor was extremely nice to them and not the non-white children, Nick was quickly convinced the neighbor had racist motivations. Citizen Truth was directed to a photograph of the neighborhood children hanging out with Nick’s daughters outside his apartment and can confirm the wide diversity of the community.

The Aftermath

Without speaking to Nick, Laura (his mother) or Amy (his fiancee), Altitude 104 Apartments placed the following documents on their door, less than 24 hours after the events in the viral video.

An oddly worded document sent to L104 (Nick’s residence) several hours after the incident by Altitude 104 Property Manager Liz Fuller

The official ‘Notice Of Termination Of Tenancy’ addressed to the adults living within L104, signed by Property Manager Liz Fuller.

Laura attempted to speak to Altitude 104 Property Manager Liz Fuller after receiving the paperwork, yet was eventually charged with a noise complaint by Fuller after the latter claimed Laura refused to leave the on-site office. Nick also stated Fuller claimed his mother threatened her in the office; Laura strongly denies the accusation. Laura eventually reached property owners John Goodman Real Estates (Seattle, Washington) on the phone at a later date, but they are refusing to help the family with the ‘Notice Of Termination Of Tenancy.’

On the 24th, Nick spoke to Fuller to make a formal complaint about the neighbor in question. However, he was told the office did not have any formal complaint forms. A present security guard (not Fuller) wrote and signed a statement asserting there were no formal complaints on record.

 

Samuel Lahn, who posted the incident and the following conversation with Fuller on Twitter, is now facing a slander lawsuit filed by the latter.

Nick told Citizen Truth that he is worried about how the children living at the apartment complex will be treated going forward.

Video Interview

The interview with Nicholas Kitchen is below. While there was slight technical difficulty, Nick was able to tell his story in an over 20-minute conversation.

Citizen Truth is attempting to contact further parties in relation to this story and will publish updates as they come.

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Walter Yeates

Walter Yeates is a journalist, novelist, and screenwriter who embedded at Standing Rock with military Veterans and First People in December 2016. He covers a range of topics at Citizen Truth and is open for tips and suggestions. Twitter: www.twitter.com/GentlemansHall or www.twitter.com/SmoothJourno Muckrack: https://muckrack.com/walteryeates

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