Accusations of racism at a North Texas golf course produced apologies and promises of a police investigation Friday.
Golfer Darius Jones says his uncomfortable encounter happened at the Trails of Frisco Golf Club. The clubhouse is located on Teel Parkway in Frisco.
“It's really unacceptable in this day and age, in any age really,” Jones said.
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Jones said he played a round of golf there Wednesday and had a conversation with an attendant in the pro shop about a friend who was joining him for golf.
“And he mentioned something about, what time the other ‘boy’ was going to show up. And I was kind of taken aback by it, but I gave him the benefit of the doubt,” Jones said.
But then at the 6th hole they saw the “N” word carved into the sand trap.
Jones posted pictures of it online only after he said he received what he considered to be a lack of interest about his concerns back at the club house.
Friday, course general manager Ginny Dyer apologized.
“I understand what you went through and I hope this never happens again. We're doing what we can in terms of finding out who did this,” Dyer said.
Dyer said she asked Frisco Police to investigate what she considered vandalism on the course.
She and Jones both said Frisco officers told them that adjacent property owner surveillance cameras might be able to provide evidence of a trespasser marking the sand trap.
“I am 100% positive that it was no one who works here,” Dyer said.
Former Dallas County Chief Assistant District Attorney and now criminal defense attorney Heath Harris said there could be criminal charges but it would depend on what evidence police uncover and what Collin County prosecutors are willing to do.
“Whether you're talking about vandalism or your talking about graffiti, again, it is the intent behind the remarks,” Harris said. “It’s not a very funny practical joke to put the 'N' word in a sand trap.”
The general manager said the message was harmful.
“The racial slur, you can't fix this. This is embedded now forever, and it hurts, but this will absolutely be taken seriously,” Dyer said.
The general manager said she would press charges if possible and plans to provide additional education for employees.
Harris said sensitivity training for employees may be the best approach.
Jones said he might not have made the issue public if he’d received a contrite response on Wednesday.
“We just want to be treated as equal,” he said.
Friday Jones said he is not anxious to return to the course after his experience there.