thumbnail of Almanac; Shades of Truth
Transcript
Hide -
<v TV Announcer>This presentation is an Almanac special report. <v Speaker>[news intro music plays] <v Narrator>The facts are these: on the night of July 24th, 1992, <v Narrator>22-year-old Eric Hicks and a friend stopped at a Chevron station in Fort Bend County. <v Narrator>Working at that store was Hung Nyugen 18-year-old brother of the elder. <v Narrator>An altercation ensued after Hicks' friends stole a beer. <v Narrator>When it was all over, Eric Hicks was dead, shot in the back by Hung Nyugen. <v Narrator>Those are the facts, but what is the truth? <v Narrator>Someone once said there may always be another reality to make fiction of the truth we <v Narrator>think we've arrived at. In this program, we'll search for the truth. <v Narrator>But as you will see, the truth often depends on your particular viewpoint. <v Narrator>The tale begins 6 months before the shooting in the Fort Bend County community of <v Narrator>Briargate, an area of some 2000 middle-class homes.
<v Mildred Landry>It's a mixture. It's a flower, you know? <v Mildred Landry>We have everybody living here. <v Mildred Landry>We have Vietnamese, we've got Blacks, we've got uh Hispanics, we've got Asians. <v Narrator>In February of 1992, Paula Nyugen decided prior gate would be a good place <v Narrator>to go into business. <v Paula Nyugen>When I first look at this store, what it's uh up for sale, I think it's a really <v Paula Nyugen>good location ?be a good store? <v Paula Nyugen>?Inaudible? store, I feel that this business give the family the opportunity to work <v Paula Nyugen>together. And it's important for us to help each other out in a family. <v Narrator>Like many Vietnamese families, the Nyugens escaped from Vietnam in 1979. <v Narrator>Paula's brother Hung was 5 years old. <v Hung Nyugen>All I remember is that there, you know, we're on a boat with <v Hung Nyugen>more than 50 people on there. <v Hung Nyugen>And we're out of foods and waters. <v Hung Nyugen>I think we'd be better off have some education
<v Hung Nyugen>like- 'cause in Vietnam, you know, you must be rich you know to go to school. <v Narrator>And as with most Asian families, Hung always helped out in the family business. <v Hung Nyugen>I've been working like most of my life for <v Hung Nyugen>them. Ever since you know, I was like 11 or 12 years old, I was <v Hung Nyugen>somewhere I got to go help my dad get on a shrimping boat, so. <v Hung Nyugen>And then, ever since that, <v Hung Nyugen>we- we got the store, so I go in there, help them out every time after school. <v Narrator>Hung became a straight A-student and planned a career as a medical technician. <v Narrator>Eric Hicks, on the other hand, had grown up in this area. <v Helen Hicks>Eric was my first-born. <v Helen Hicks>He was a very loving, happy child who <v Helen Hicks>always tried to get the- the zest out of life. <v Helen Hicks>He uh made a lot of friends. <v Helen Hicks>He attracted people to him and he had a lot of friends.
<v Reverend T.R. Williams>Eric was basically a quiet person. <v Reverend T.R. Williams>Kind of stayed in his own little world, he had his own set of friends. <v Reverend T.R. Williams>He was involved in the church. <v Narrator>But Eric had his problems too. <v Narrator>He was on probation on a burglary charge. <v Narrator>Mrs. Hicks and their pastor tried to reach out to him. <v Reverend T.R. Williams>The things that Eric dealt with more than anything was this <v Reverend T.R. Williams>typical thing that young people are dealing with today. <v Reverend T.R. Williams>And that's peer pressure. He couldn't handle peer pressure. <v Helen Hicks>You try to advise your children when you can foresee <v Helen Hicks>something that you don't think is best for them, but you can't always choose for them. <v Narrator>On the night of July 24th, Hung was working in the store with his father, his 9-year-old <v Narrator>brother, and an employee. At about 11:30, Eric and a friend stopped at the store. <v Narrator>Between Hung and what Eric's friends told Reverend Williams, what happened was <v Narrator>this. <v Reverend T.R. Williams>While in the station, 1 of the young men stole a bottle of beer.
<v Reverend T.R. Williams>And this young Hung Nyugen pursued this <v Reverend T.R. Williams>individual, ran him down, got the bottle of back, <v Reverend T.R. Williams>and when he came back, then, at that time, Eric was outside the store <v Reverend T.R. Williams>with the Hung Nyugen's father, I think it was. <v Hung Nyugen>My dad saw that and then came out, so <v Hung Nyugen>I saw he came out with ?inaudible? <v Hung Nyugen>I thought, there's no use for it. <v Hung Nyugen>So I bring it in. And he was out there- Hicks you know, pushin' him. <v Hung Nyugen>So I bring the golf club out you know to scare him, but he <v Hung Nyugen>wasn't. <v Reverend T.R. Williams>Eric took the golf club and he began to swing it. <v Reverend T.R. Williams>He began to swing it at uh the store owners. <v Reverend T.R. Williams>They went back into the store. <v Hung Nyugen>Try to attack us inside the store with the golf club. <v Hung Nyugen>But you know, we duck and then he'd take beers, cans of beers
<v Hung Nyugen>and bottles and throw it at us. <v Hung Nyugen>And you know, my little- little brother was in there. <v Hung Nyugen>He was scared. We were scared. <v Hung Nyugen>Just going crazy. <v Hung Nyugen>Thought we're done- there's an exp- doesn't know what to expect from him next. <v Hung Nyugen>And then he pushed the ?inaudible? <v Hung Nyugen>be outside. <v Reverend T.R. Williams>By this time, Eric's friends had persuaded him to come out of the store. <v Reverend T.R. Williams>He was walking out of the store on the way to the uh truck. <v Reverend T.R. Williams>And as he was moving toward the truck, Hung Nyugen came out of the store <v Reverend T.R. Williams>and shot him in the back with another pistol. <v Hung Nyugen>I shot for him to stop. And he didn't. <v Hung Nyugen>So I went and fired a warning shot. <v Hung Nyugen>He still didn't stop. <v Hung Nyugen>So I fire another shot, that's when it hit him. <v Hung Nyugen>Saw him fall down. <v Hung Nyugen>?I bring in? call for the ambulance.
<v Hung Nyugen>Hope and pray he'll be all right. <v Interviewer>When you shot him, were you- were you shooting to kill him? <v Hung Nyugen>Wasn't intent to kill him. <v Hung Nyugen>I just tried scared him. <v Hung Nyugen>So he'd just leave it and take off. <v Hung Nyugen>You know he's getting closer and <v Hung Nyugen>closer to the car. I guess it's his getaway or something. <v Hung Nyugen>And I don't know if he's gonna come back with a gun and so. <v Hung Nyugen>I was scared. <v Paula Nyugen>But I was very scared because ever- ever since we're doing this business, every time the <v Paula Nyugen>phone ring, I was like, real- I was shaking, 'cause I was <v Paula Nyugen>thinking something- I mean that call from the store. <v Paula Nyugen>And that something could happen up there. <v Paula Nyugen>And so when I heard that phone ring at that time of a night, I was frightened. <v Narrator>Hung was arrested that night by Houston police. <v Narrator>In the fight with Eric, Hung suffered a concussion and a broken foot.
<v Narrator>The protest began at the store [protestors in background] the very next day. <v Sterling Howard>There were some ladies, uh about 3 ladies across the <v Sterling Howard>street, more or less trying to boycott or trying to get something effective going <v Sterling Howard>on there. <v Sterling Howard>Uh I stopped up and had gotten out to get gas and they pretty much shouted out to <v Sterling Howard>not buy any gas there because they shot a black man <v Sterling Howard>in the back last night. <v Sterling Howard>So when I heard them say that, it <v Sterling Howard>was all like someone had shot a spear into me, so to speak. <v Sterling Howard>[protestors in background] So I got on the phone and start making some phone calls, and <v Sterling Howard>people came on out and uh made the thing a <v Sterling Howard>success. <v Protestors>Couldda been you, couldda been you, couldda been you! <v Narrator>The protesters acted within a week to organize the boycott. <v Marty Muhammad>I feel that it's not gonna be successful on a long term because in a few days emotion <v Marty Muhammad>will die down and then things will be back as usual, so I feel that the only way
<v Marty Muhammad>you could keep things intact was to identify the <v Marty Muhammad>people that was the most serious and then try to organize them around the clock <v Marty Muhammad>for that objective. <v Narrator>But not everyone supported the boycott. <v Ila Warren>Well, to be honest, I was furious because I felt this was an intrusion <v Ila Warren>on our privacy, in other words, an invasion of our privacy. <v C.T. Wint>Well, at first, I couldn't understand why they had organized the protest <v C.T. Wint>so fast, when the details were not clearly known. <v Narrator>From the beginning, Paula Nyugen had received support from Rusche Distributing, the <v Narrator>company that handled the leasing of the stores for Chevron. <v Cal McIntosh>Our perception of the protests was some- <v Cal McIntosh>some radical people out there jumping on some type <v Cal McIntosh>of a cause. <v Cal McIntosh>And we did at that point and of course, did not agree with what they were doing. <v Cal McIntosh>Unfortunately, we've had some experience with shootings and convenience stores you know
<v Cal McIntosh>in- in Houston. That is unfortunately not uncommon. <v Narrator>But the protest forced Paula Nyugen to shut down her store. <v Cal McIntosh>Initially, there were some fears of some violence in the community. <v Cal McIntosh>We were hearing through indirectly, through some constable deputies that <v Cal McIntosh>some people were talking about burning the store down or drive-by shootings or something <v Cal McIntosh>to that effect. <v Paula Nyugen>I couldn't afford to have my family members behind the- the- the counter, <v Paula Nyugen>when the other- when the boycotters just outside the store. <v Paula Nyugen>You know, they making threatens, they saying that if we don't close the store, we're <v Paula Nyugen>going to have some gang member drive-by shootings and all this thing. <v Narrator>Although the store had closed, the protest continued. <v Narrator>But Eric Hicks' mother asked publicly through her pastor that the protesters not <v Narrator>use her son's name. <v Reverend T.R. Williams>It's not that we were standing against the protesters. <v Reverend T.R. Williams>We didn't even know what they were really about. <v Reverend T.R. Williams>The thing that we stood against was that this incident had happened.
<v Reverend T.R. Williams>And now all of a sudden, individuals are using this incident <v Reverend T.R. Williams>to launch some personal <v Reverend T.R. Williams>platform. And we didn't want Eric's name and the <v Reverend T.R. Williams>Hicks family name linked with that. <v Helen Hicks>I didn't agree with the fact that they didn't get my permission to <v Helen Hicks>go and do this in the name of Eric Hicks. <v Helen Hicks>Now, they felt they had a cause. I can't completely say they were wrong because <v Helen Hicks>I didn't look at it as a racial situation. <v Helen Hicks>I just think that it would have happened, whatever <v Helen Hicks>black, white, brown, whatever color I didn't look at as a racially motivated situation. <v Interviewer>So you don't think that Eric was shot because he was black? <v Helen Hicks>No, I do not think he was shot because he was black. <v Narrator>It seemed inevitable that the issue of race would be raised across the country. <v Narrator>Relations have been strained as Asians open businesses in black communities, often <v Narrator>areas where no one else wants to work. <v Narrator>During the 1992 Los Angeles riots, many Asian businesses were looted
<v Narrator>and many Asians fought back. <v Protestor>If black men are constantly killed, consistently killed, <v Protestor>senselessly, then what's gonna happen to our children? <v Paula Nyugen>If we weren't Asian, it wouldn't happened. <v Paula Nyugen>These thing- these protesters wouldn't be there. <v Paula Nyugen>'Cause most of them don't know exactly what happened that night. <v Paula Nyugen>They'd be there just because you know they- they hate Asians. <v Marty Muhammad>It's sad that we live in a society of 400 years of being <v Marty Muhammad>victimized by racism, being the product of racism. <v Marty Muhammad>And then when we take a stand to try to defend ourselves, the very- <v Marty Muhammad>often time the very people that have practiced racism on everybody accuses <v Marty Muhammad>us now being racism- racist, because we try to defend ourselves <v Marty Muhammad>against practices that are, in fact, racist. <v Mildred Landry>That is racism. <v Mildred Landry>It's racism and that's it.
<v Mildred Landry>And I'm appalled that we would stoop so low- some areas, some residents <v Mildred Landry>in the area that would go down and literally destroy <v Mildred Landry>an individual's livelihood, which did it for no <v Mildred Landry>reason. <v Al Edwards>Well, I'm not so sure it's- it's racism as it is maybe have been misinformed <v Al Edwards>when some of the foreigners came to this country. <v Al Edwards>You know, maybe they- they misread some of what some of their racist friends maybe <v Al Edwards>had told them that is that uh, you know, that the stigmas that's placed <v Al Edwards>on black folks, which are untrue. <v Narrator>Asian community leader Glenda Joe maintains the situations in Los Angeles and Briargate <v Narrator>are the exception, not the rule. <v Glenda Joe>99 point nine percent of all Asian merchants in the Houston area <v Glenda Joe>have absolutely no problem in their stores. <v Glenda Joe>They have very good customer relations and they understand the American marketplace <v Glenda Joe>very well. They understand that their bottom line relates to
<v Glenda Joe>their customers' feelings about their stores. <v Glenda Joe>For that 1 percent, we put the handbook together. <v Narrator>Drawing on her experience working in her father's grocery store as a child, Joe put <v Narrator>together a guidebook for Asian merchants translated into 4 languages. <v Glenda Joe>For example, it's considered rude to be overly familiar, <v Glenda Joe>and we consider that in our culture- in American culture to be courteous. <v Glenda Joe>You know, so there's- there's a lot of like miscommunication. <v Glenda Joe>The other issue I deal with in this is the use of deadly force. <v Glenda Joe>Because that is such an issue, especially here in Texas. <v Narrator>The handbook was written up in The New York Times and The Wall Street Journal. <v Glenda Joe>This box is filled with a request from- from all over the country, from <v Glenda Joe>municipalities um that are looking at this <v Glenda Joe>issue. There um there's Baltimore, there's New York or San Francisco, <v Glenda Joe>L.A., Tampa, Florida, Cleveland. <v Narrator>Meanwhile, the protesters received reinforcements.
<v Sterling Howard>When it had gotten down to where it seemed as though it was- <v Sterling Howard>it was gonna all be over with, then came the men. <v Sterling Howard>A busload. <v Sterling Howard>Miracles in Motion, Enlightened Chapel. <v Sterling Howard>They heard of our plight, but they did come out there and <v Sterling Howard>help hold the fort down. And oh, what a feeling that was when they arrived. <v Speaker>[singing] <v Narrator>Miracles in Motion is a residential program for drug addicts run by Enlightened Chapel <v Narrator>ministries in Houston. Church leaders seek out addicts on the street and bring them <v Narrator>in to get them off drugs and back into society. <v Narrator>When they heard of the boycott, they decided to become involved. <v Tyrone Evans>The ministry is always attempting to <v Tyrone Evans>make its presence felt on the street in situations <v Tyrone Evans>where there are injustices and situations where people are
<v Tyrone Evans>being oppressed uh or really, you know, there's some kind of <v Tyrone Evans>racism that may be involved, anything like that. <v Narrator>What Evans says he wanted to do was focus attention on how stores can help stop drug <v Narrator>addiction by not selling drug paraphernalia like brillo pads. <v Tyrone Evans>They sell for about a buck per pad. <v Tyrone Evans>And what the addict does with this he'll take this here and put it inside of the stem- uh <v Tyrone Evans>the straight shooter that they smoke out of and it's used as a filter. <v Narrator>The protesters claim Paul Nyugen had also sold cigarettes and alcohol to minors. <v Marty Muhammad>I've seen some of those things myself from that same store. <v Marty Muhammad>I've seen the store owners or the clerks, whoever workin' <v Marty Muhammad>the store actually sells single cigarettes to minors. <v Marty Muhammad>I've seen that. <v Paula Nyugen>They had all those complaints, and accusation about us which <v Paula Nyugen>are wrong. They have no profound evidence about it. <v Paula Nyugen>And even the constable- the constable down the street had no complaints about us.
<v Narrator>The addition of the Miracles in Motion picketers raised questions about so-called <v Narrator>outsiders interfering in Briargate. <v Ila Warren>Everyone was saying they were leaders of Briargate and out of the boycott, <v Ila Warren>I can truly say only about 5 people were really from Briargate. <v Marty Muhammad>There was some people. <v Marty Muhammad>That was on the line that didn't actually live in Briargate. <v Marty Muhammad>That's true. <v Marty Muhammad>The boycott grew out of people that lived in Briargate. <v Marty Muhammad>Those of us that make up the committee live in Briargate. <v Marty Muhammad>So, there was some truth to it, but the truth <v Marty Muhammad>to it was so minor, it was very insignificant. <v Narrator>Paula Nyugen refused to give up. She decided to reopen the store on August 6. <v Paula Nyugen>I feel the supportive of the people in the neighborhood and <v Paula Nyugen>they kept telling me that, don't be afraid. <v Paula Nyugen>We're here for you. <v Cal McIntosh>We decided that we would go through advertising and through
<v Cal McIntosh>kind of a reopening, thank <v Cal McIntosh>the people in Briargate that supported us and supported the store and- and have kind <v Cal McIntosh>of a little a weekend grand reopening. <v Narrator>But the reopening had no effect on the protesters. <v Protestor>We'll not be sold out with cheap advertisment, glasses for free, <v Protestor>hotdogs and drink for free. <v Protestor>We're not for sale. <v Narrator>Paula Nyugen believed she had supporters in the community, but the protesters scared them <v Narrator>off. <v Paula Nyugen>Every time we had people coming- they wanted to come in to support us. <v Paula Nyugen>But then these people, would screaming, yelling, and hollering at them. <v Narrator>Finally, Paula gave up. On August 24th, she sold the store. <v Paula Nyugen>Because of uh what my brother gone through and because of uh my family. <v Cal McIntosh>The uh decision to sell out of the store was Paula's and Paula's <v Cal McIntosh>alone. <v Narrator>But Hung Nyugen's ordeal with just beginning. <v Narrator>The issue of Eric Hicks' shooting was taken before a grand jury.
<v Narrator>The district attorney's office asked for an indictment for murder. <v Gordon White>Basically in a murder indictment says that the individual, intentionally or knowingly, <v Gordon White>only causes the death of another individual. <v Don Bankston>He was shot because of the violence that he committed upon that store and the fear <v Don Bankston>that that young man had of his life due to the violence that had been <v Don Bankston>reaped upon him, the damage to his store and his perceived <v Don Bankston>and apparent danger that he felt from the person who was totally out <v Don Bankston>of control. <v Narrator>3 times the grand jury voted to take no action in the shooting. <v Narrator>The grand jury had been criticized because it had only 10 members. <v Narrator>And there was another problem: none of those 10 members was black. <v Narrator>And that brought more protests. <v Reverend T.R. Williams>The law states that the grand jury must be representative <v Reverend T.R. Williams>of the total community. <v Reverend T.R. Williams>When you look at the community of Fort Bend County, the majority of individuals <v Reverend T.R. Williams>in Fort Bend are minorities. <v Al Edwards>I hadn't even thought about whether it was made up of black, whites, brown or whatever.
<v Al Edwards>My position is if he was shot in the back after it was over <v Al Edwards>out on the parking lot, then there's no reason for foreigners or anyone <v Al Edwards>else to shoot black boys or black men in the back, as if they're dogs or birds. <v Narrator>The grand jury members finally resigned, and a new grand jury was appointed to rehear all <v Narrator>the cases presented to the first 1. <v Narrator>This panel had 6 blacks, 5 whites and 1 Hispanic. <v Narrator>The grand jury was impaneled on October 6th. <v Narrator>On November 16th hug when was indicted for murder. <v Don Bankston>Because of the atmosphere and tension and the method they were chosen, <v Don Bankston>the fact that the other- the uh outside pressures <v Don Bankston>that were put upon to cause disbanding of the first 1 and the formation of <v Don Bankston>the second 1, that that tension and that <v Don Bankston>uh pressure, in my opinion, had to affect them and the way <v Don Bankston>they looked at the case. <v Gordon White>I presented the case the same way to both grand juries. <v Gordon White>Um the same evidence was presented to each.
<v Gordon White>They had opportunities to explore what they chose to explore in each instance. <v Gordon White>And I said the same things to both. I said, if you refuse to return an indictment on this <v Gordon White>case, you will be doing it for other than legal reasons. <v Narrator>But it wasn't over yet. Hung's indictment was thrown out on January 4th because <v Narrator>there were no Asians on the second grand jury. <v Narrator>The case went to yet another grand jury. <v Narrator>This 1 racially mixed. The result on February 8th, Hung Nyugen <v Narrator>was no ?bill? in the case of Eric Hicks' death. <v Paula Nyugen>Oh we are talking and hugging. <v Paula Nyugen>We all cry for what happened to Hung and <v Paula Nyugen>about the good news that we heard. <v Paula Nyugen>It's just been great. I mean, this is uh the happiest moment for <v Paula Nyugen>us ever since that night. <v Hung Nyugen>I'm gonna finish high school and uh go to college. <v Narrator>1 young man is dead. Another will have to live with the fact that he caused that death. <v Narrator>And what is the result of this incident and its aftermath?
<v Helen Hicks>I believe in God. And I know that he can work it out in the end. <v Helen Hicks>And that's the only thing that's sustained me from day to day, my faith. <v Narrator>For Reverend Williams, it was a chance to reach out to Eric's friends. <v Reverend T.R. Williams>There is a lifestyle that is <v Reverend T.R. Williams>counterproductive. There is a lifestyle that leads to <v Reverend T.R. Williams>death and uh degradation. <v Reverend T.R. Williams>It- it- it leads nowhere. <v Reverend T.R. Williams>It leads down a dead-end road, and it doesn't matter how <v Reverend T.R. Williams>smart you think you are or how sharp you think you are, <v Reverend T.R. Williams>that eventually wrong behaviors <v Reverend T.R. Williams>will catch up with you. <v Marty Muhammad>The people of Briargate by and large, supported our effort, that <v Marty Muhammad>mean that there is some degree of bond between what we were doing and what they <v Marty Muhammad>themselves saw. <v Ila Warren>If there is any good, it has escaped me.
<v Ila Warren>Because I don't see where the community is any better. <v Ila Warren>The only thing I can say was better, the boycotters are out of here. <v Narrator>Enlightened Chapel ministries ended up with work from Rusche Distributing. <v Cal McIntosh>We have some work lined up now with the Chevron station, you know pressure washer, <v Cal McIntosh>operating our pressure washing machine. <v Narrator>That didn't sit well with some of the other protesters. <v Reginald Polar>We trusted them. And then we found that, <v Reginald Polar>you know, that sometimes you are motivated more by <v Reginald Polar>selfish and egotistical reasons than motivated by what the <v Reginald Polar>good of- of humanity is. <v Glenda Joe>What the Asian community did learn from this is that it's <v Glenda Joe>not OK to expect the media and the justice system to do its job when it comes to <v Glenda Joe>an Asian being scapegoated. <v Don Bankston>Most importantly, I hope Mr. Nyugen ultimately learns the <v Don Bankston>les- and I hope the lesson is that while the system has its <v Don Bankston>ups and downs, hopefully it will- it will be corrected
<v Don Bankston>and it will- the right result will happen and that he will feel that uh <v Don Bankston>he was right to escape tyranny in Vietnam for the freedom <v Don Bankston>in the United States, and he can get about his life. <v Hung Nyugen>I'm sorry that you know her son is dead. <v Hung Nyugen>I can understand that what she's gone through, losing her son, <v Hung Nyugen>is sad, 'cause my parents gone <v Hung Nyugen>through the same, so almost like the same situation with me. <v Hung Nyugen>I feel sorry for her. <v Helen Hicks>I guess I'm of the belief that had <v Helen Hicks>a different decision had been made from the beginning when it all happened, then maybe <v Helen Hicks>he would still be alive. But then God is the ultimate <v Helen Hicks>and he's spoken, so because I know that I must accept <v Helen Hicks>His will I do accept the fact that he is gone, but it hurts very much.
Please note: This content is only available at GBH and the Library of Congress, either due to copyright restrictions or because this content has not yet been reviewed for copyright or privacy issues. For information about on location research, click here.
Series
Almanac
Episode
Shades of Truth
Producing Organization
KUHT
Contributing Organization
The Walter J. Brown Media Archives & Peabody Awards Collection at the University of Georgia (Athens, Georgia)
AAPB ID
cpb-aacip/526-9p2w37mv57
If you have more information about this item than what is given here, or if you have concerns about this record, we want to know! Contact us, indicating the AAPB ID (cpb-aacip/526-9p2w37mv57).
Description
Episode Description
"'Shades of Truth' is a special edition of ALMANAC, KUHT's weekly news and public affairs program. The report explores a suburban convenience store shooting which inflamed racial tensions between black and [Asian] Houstonians, serving as an example of similar problems between the two groups throughout the United States. We meet Hung Nguyen, a Vietnamese refugee who maintained an 'A' average in high school while working at his family's tore, and Eric Hicks, the only son of a middle class black family who fell into a life of crime despite seeming to have everything going for him. Everyone involved agrees that Nguyen shot and killed Hicks outside the store late one night. They also all had their own version of the 'truth' of what really happened. It is these 'truths' which are explored in this report. The program illuminates the biases and motivations of those who led the post-shooting boycott of the Nguyens' store (which eventually forced them to sell out) as well as the racially-charged atmosphere surrounding the investigation of the incident by three grand juries. 'Shades of Truth' merits Peabody consideration not only for offering viewers a chance to learn how both sides interpreted the course of events but also for exposing the prejudice which contributed to one man's death and another's harrowing ride through the criminal justice system."--1993 Peabody Awards entry form.?
Episode Description
This item is part of the Vietnamese Americans section of the AAPI special collection.
Broadcast Date
1993-03-25
Media type
Moving Image
Credits
Producing Organization: KUHT
AAPB Contributor Holdings
The Walter J. Brown Media Archives & Peabody Awards Collection at the University of Georgia
Identifier: 93004dct-arch (Peabody Archive Object ID)
Format: U-matic
Duration: 0:25:29
If you have a copy of this asset and would like us to add it to our catalog, please contact us.
Citations
Chicago: “Almanac; Shades of Truth,” 1993-03-25, The Walter J. Brown Media Archives & Peabody Awards Collection at the University of Georgia, American Archive of Public Broadcasting (GBH and the Library of Congress), Boston, MA and Washington, DC, accessed June 28, 2022, http://americanarchive.org/catalog/cpb-aacip-526-9p2w37mv57.
MLA: “Almanac; Shades of Truth.” 1993-03-25. The Walter J. Brown Media Archives & Peabody Awards Collection at the University of Georgia, American Archive of Public Broadcasting (GBH and the Library of Congress), Boston, MA and Washington, DC. Web. June 28, 2022. <http://americanarchive.org/catalog/cpb-aacip-526-9p2w37mv57>.
APA: Almanac; Shades of Truth. Boston, MA: The Walter J. Brown Media Archives & Peabody Awards Collection at the University of Georgia, American Archive of Public Broadcasting (GBH and the Library of Congress), Boston, MA and Washington, DC. Retrieved from http://americanarchive.org/catalog/cpb-aacip-526-9p2w37mv57