Black Swan Books at 2601 West Main Street in Richmond, Va. photographed on Saturday, July 7, 2018.

A bookstore owner in Richmond said he called the police after a woman confronted Steve Bannon, former White House chief strategist for President Donald Trump, in his shop Saturday.

Nick Cooke, owner of Black Swan Books on West Main Street in the Fan District, said Bannon was in the bookstore Saturday afternoon and that a woman confronted him, calling him a “piece of trash.”

Cooke said he called 911 and that the woman left as he made the call.

“Steve Bannon was simply standing, looking at books, minding his own business. I asked her to leave, and she wouldn’t. And I said, ‘I’m going to call the police if you don’t,’ and I went to call the police and she left,” Cooke said. “And that’s the end of the story.”

The Richmond Police Department confirmed a call was made around 3:15 p.m. Saturday for a report of someone yelling at a political figure in the bookstore and that the call was canceled before any officers responded.

“We are a bookshop. Bookshops are all about ideas and tolerating different opinions and not about verbally assaulting somebody, which is what was happening,” Cooke said.

Bannon grew up in Richmond’s North Side and graduated from Benedictine High School.

The incident mirrors other protest actions taken directly against Trump supporters and officials in their private time.

In June, demonstrators confronted Homeland Security Secretary Kirstjen Nielsen at a Mexican restaurant in Washington, D.C., and the owner of the Red Hen, a restaurant in Lexington, declined to serve White House Press Secretary Sarah Huckabee Sanders.

This past Monday, a woman with her 2-year-old son confronted Trump’s now former Environmental Protection Agency Administrator Scott Pruitt in a D.C. restaurant and urged him to resign. Trump said Thursday that he had accepted his scandal-plagued EPA chief’s resignation.

When asked about whether he has a personal relationship with Bannon, Cooke said he had no comment and wanted to respect Bannon’s privacy, describing him as “a private person in my bookshop.”

A photograph of what appeared to be Bannon in the bookshop circulated Saturday on Twitter.

It is unclear who specifically confronted Bannon at Black Swan Books.

Efforts to contact Bannon early Saturday evening were unsuccessful.

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(49) comments

Drake D Butler

At least democrats are all protesting the right Book Store. By this time the low education voters that Rump says he loves so well had already harassed owners of the Red Hen restaurant in New Jersey and the Red Hen Bakery in New England. If Dems were mean spirited enough to turn out and picket the book store he’d go out of business! Dems read all the books!


As I wrote elsewhere, I think the owner did the right thing. If you wonder why it's particularly apropos for a bookstore owner to behave this way, go back and read "Fahrenheit 452" again.

Drake D Butler

Yes... a proprietor of any business has the right to ask someone to leave for unseemly behavior.

Drake D Butler

So Rump tried to throw (unfounded) shade on the owner of the Red Hen. And now it turns out the the TRUE shady character (embezzlement) is the Bookstore owner who stood up for Bannon and called the cops? Priceless!

Apparently not only Rump and everyone he ever employed is shady. But everyone they patronize on a regular basis is shady too.


We can either speak truth to power, NOW, or politely allow the jackboots to silence us forever.

Tom Terrific

Right and laws aside, this is the result of unpopular speech. He has the right to free speech, and verbal assault is (technically) prosecutable, but ain’t karma a bi*ch? He got a small fraction of what he deserved. Their is still hope for Richmond after all.

Steve Corneliussen

It's important for Trumpism to be steamrolled in November. These incidents aren't helping the prospects. The harassing woman caused harm.


Otis …. Earnest T. Bass here …… that woman only makes deplorables get behind the steam roller and ready to flatting some sore losers down to the level they have been operating from since they lost their Queen earlier, and a real show of stupid lately. Glad you can see that too. Checkmate …. and period.

Comment deleted.
Steve Corneliussen

Seeing no proof or even evidence of that serious charge made in a public forum hosted by the newspaper, I flagged the comment. It's one thing to oppose Bannonism and Trumpism, which I do myself, but it's another to level that kind of charge in that way here.


NO ONE should be harassed while in a public place, especially for political reasons. In reality, the ones doing the harassing look trashy and stupid.

Julia Hebner

It is destructive to civil society to tolerate hatefulness and evil from those who exercise power. To extend civility to those who advocate mistreatment of fellow humans is to undermine civility and tolerance itself. Would you be respectful of someone advocating puppy torture? Or would you stand up to them?

April Sullivan

I sure hope you do not mean my comment regarding the millions of dollars the owners of that bookstore embezzled from their church. It is a well documented fact. https://www.washingtonpost.com/archive/politics/1996/07/11/episcopal-church-ex-treasurer-gets-5-years-for-embezzlement/1bac7ca0-7334-4ba0-bfd6-add28ba6baff/?noredirect=on&utm_term=.cb2a13db8e08

Comment deleted.
Drake D Butler

Maybe democrats should start boycotting the bookstore like repugs are boycotting the Red Hen. The people who read boycotting a book store? That could be bad news! That bookstore owner may be regretting that Rump courted the poorly-educated vote. LOL

Drake D Butler

“call was canceled before any officers responded.”

Nothing to see here... move along... people talking and snowflake republicans making a federal issue of it.


Yep liberal milksop ran scared and fled - some conviction. Zhe was clearly the snowflake.

Drake D Butler

What I offered was a quote. What you describe is the imagination of your fevered brain. No mention of fleeing scared. Snowflakes like you are SO defensive.


Of course she retreated and ran away when onwer went to call po-po. Facts of the story. Liberals are SO cowardly

Drake D Butler

Yeah... in your poor snow-flaky mind. No evidence to support it though... like SO many conservative statements.

Tom Terrific

What insult was intended by the word “snowflake?” It seems an illogical reference. Is it that they are cold and frozen, or that they are unique and beautiful? Can you be more specific?

Drake D Butler

Seems self evident.. they wither and melt when the heat is on.

Drake D Butler

Don’t stand up and associate with scummy politicians like Rump if you don’t want some negative feedback.


Yeah, if only trump associated with a slumlord like Valeria Jarrett who enriched herself by billking taxpayer of millions with her HUD scams.

Drake D Butler

Who? Manafort? Under indictment... Cohen? under investigation ... Porter? Wife beater with top secret clearance...Price? Resigned over use of private jets...Scaramucci? Forced to resign for bad behavior... Flynn? Fired after failing to disclose Russian meetings. Pruitt? Resigned for ethics violations and mis-use of funds.


The new left is beginning to look a lot like those mentally deranged who charge into class rooms, but instead of guns, just ugly mouths and juvenile actions ….. and why? …. Their Queen losing to Trump, the most likely of the 16 GOP candidates they thought would give Hilary the best chance of winning. The embarrassment has been more than they take …. And to get even, they continue to embarrass themselves.

Will they succeed with this kind of support from their sore losing flock with Maxine Waters leading the way? …. Who knows? ….. The Democrats since 2016 have set the bar as low as it can get on how to become rehabilitated, making winning almost impossible unless the lowly True American Deplorable become complacent and do not show up to vote.

Drake D Butler

After mean-spirited Republicans like Tracy adamantly supported tearing thousands of immigrant children from their mothers arms and locking them in cages Democrats learned that they could stop crimes against humanity by raising their voices against the perpetrators. It’s certainly appropriate to let this washed up Rump cast-off Bannon here that most intelligent people are in to the lies he panders. And.. touchè.


After mean-spirited left-wing nuts like Drake adamantly supported tearing thousands of immigrant children from their mother’s arms and locking them in cages Democrats were embarrassed when they learned that their Savior had been doing it since 2014. It’s certainly appropriate for loser to always treat anyone who doesn’t hate Rump as cast-offs understanding that is what Democrats do when they are losing.

Read on dummy where Jeh Johnson, secretary of Homeland Security in the Obama administration, threw a wrench in the progressive narrative on Sunday, when he freely admitted the Obama administration did exactly what the Trump administration is being criticized for — Duh …. Checkmate and period.


Drake D Butler

There’s Tracy... lying and incorporating a link to support his lie that does nothing if the sort. If he bothered to READ the link instead of just the headline he would see hat Obama NEVER had a policy of tearing thousands of crying immigrant children from their mothers arms. But then, the typical conservative today is scrambling for any shred of evidence to dispute Rump’s horribly inhumane policy. And... Tracy has always had a very tenuous reality with reality let alone fact checking. And... touchè.


Verablly and physically assaulting people that have different political views. Ah yes, secular liberals are a picture book for tolerance.....and hypocrisy. Typical that coward bolted after police were called - she must have left her cowardly mask in her Prius

Drake D Butler

Joe Wilson yelled “you lie” at President Obama in front of the House of Representatives and the world. Sounds like republicans can dish it out... theybare just snowflakes who can’t take it.

jim peace

It was crude but it was the absolute truth.


Drake D Butler

It WAS crude of Wilson and Obama was telling he absolute truth. At least you agree the republicans broke decades-old protocols of respecting he president on the house floor first.

Obama did not happen to be talking about keeping doctors when Wilson spoke up. But when did conservatives ever miss a chance to bring up one of Obama’s few gotcha’s?

“During his address, Obama said: "There are also those who claim that our reform effort will insure illegal immigrants. This, too, is false – the reforms I'm proposing would not apply to those who are here illegally." In a breach of decorum,[39] Wilson pointed at Obama and shouted, "You lie!" twice.”

Now... if you want to see a REAL LYING president check out these 10 PAGES of Rump lies..

From politifact... same source as yours.


Confrontation or harassment? I say harassment and people need to report this to the authorities. The bookshop owner did the right thing. Remember, the Nazis started with this type of harassment.

Drake D Butler

The Nazis were harassing Jews and common folk. Not expressing opinions to politicians and public figures. Let’s hope you never cursed a player out from the stadium of a football field.


These liberals have lost their minds. Since when is it ok to accost people in their spare time. This isn’t Russia or China. People have a right to their privacy no matter who they work for.

Drake D Butler

Actually in Russia or China you get arrested for this because they don’t have free speech. Public personalities get verbal feedback all the time.


Certainly can count on Dems to make low class comments. All starting with a low class confrontation. Obviously the free-speech, open to diverse ideas liberal turns out to be nothing but a myth.

Michael Karabinos

Free speech is not a suicide pact. We will use OUR Freedom to speak truth to those who seek to tear this nation down, loot it and leave it's people divided and impoverished while the cronies make off with Billions.


The Clintons and cronies they enriched off taxpayer were at book store too? Big day for Black Swan.

Drake D Butler

Conservative keep having these paranoid delusions they are seeing Clintons. The only ones being (more) enriched off the taxpayer are the Rumps.


The Trumps are already rich from private enterprise. Clinton's never held a job not funded by taxpayer or resulting from payoffs /bribes to cronies for political favours or speech money from 1% wall Street backers.

Drake D Butler

So now it’s a crime to be paid for working for the government. I know in the minds of conservatives government should be smal but, really, not giving tax dollars to pay thebSexretary of State or the President

Meanwhile Rump is playing with the American economy with tarriffs and picking winners and losers based on whether they will enrichen his bottom line. Not to mention the foreign dignitaries pouring money into his hotels to garner his favor.


While he may have been belched from the swamp the slime remains on him.


Slimy, low-class comment. Too bad it's not unexpected.


That Bannon guy looks like a vagrant, homeless, and probably someone begging for loose change. The cops should have hauled him off or taken him down to the rail yard so he could have hitched a ride in a box car! How proud Benedictine must be of their alumnus!

Peter Gossel

The book store owner did the right thing.

Ron Melancon

These people have no class these liberals are walking all over us and shutting us up. It’s anout time we stop praying and give them to worry about..... let’s vote against them

Drake D Butler

Well... Rump fired the guy. And the general public is supposed to treat him better?

But this is my fave part. The people are being heard... the people are speaking out against abuse of the public trust...

“This past Monday, a woman with her 2-year-old son confronted Trump’s now former Environmental Protection Agency Administrator Scott Pruitt in a D.C. restaurant and urged him to resign. (Trump announced Thursday that he had accepted his scandal-plagued EPA chief's resignation.)”

Welcome to the discussion.

Please keep it clean, turn off CAPS LOCK and don't threaten anyone. Be truthful, nice and proactive. Comments cannot be edited or deleted once posted. To flag a comment to the page administrator, click “report” next to that comment.

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