Motorist Cassy McWade says she was in a car accident, and the family called their regular mechanic to drive about 45 minutes north in order to tow her home to Traveler's Rest from the side of the Interstate. He wasn't able to make the trip, so McWade says he called Shupe.
He arrived after about an hour and began the process of towing the vehicle.
"He goes around back and comes back and says 'I can't tow you.' My first instinct was there must be something wrong with the car," McWade told News 13 on Wednesday. "And he says, 'No, you're a Bernie supporter.' And I was like wait, really? And he says, 'Yes ma'am,' and just walks away."
McWade has a Bernie Sanders bumper sticker on her rear fender and a yard sign in her rear window for Sen. Bernie Sanders.
Shupe , who supports presumptive Republican presidential candidate Donald Trump, said his decision on the side of the interstate this week was more about business than politics.
He believes Bernie Sanders supporters are socialists, and says he's had problems with two customers over the last six months who supported Bernie Sanders. He said they caused him problems over paying their bills.
"I've had some horrible experiences in the last six months with towing cars for this mindset individuals, in that I don't get paid. They want to argue about a $50 tow bill, and it turns into just a drama and a fuss. And I said, you know, I'm not going to associate with them, and I'm not going to do any business with them," Shupe said.
"I'm really not interested in doing business with that clientele," he said of Sanders supporters.
"I personally don't believe that you don't have to agree on anything just to be kind to one another," McWade said. "I was like, what did I do to you? You know, I do believe I try to do right by people. So I was offended, and I don't know what exactly he thinks I would have done to him directly by being a believer in Bernie."
McWade, 25, has psoriatic arthritis, fibromyalgia, Chronic Fatigue Syndrome and early-stage Crohns, which she said made sitting on the side of the road without a restroom nearby"terrifying". She is legally disabled and says the handicapped placard was hanging on her mirror when Shupe arrived.
She also says the family mechanic informed Shupe that she was disabled.
After waiting more than an hour and a half, McWade was towed by another company.
Shupe says he did not know that McWade was disabled.
"Had she been disabled, would I have towed her car? No ma'am. I would have pulled forward and sat there with her to make sure she was OK until another wrecker service showed up to get her home safely, but I still would not have towed her car," said Shupe. "I stand by my decision, and I would do it again today if the opportunity presented itself."
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