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Title: Black men's arrest at Philadelphia Starbucks prompts city probes amid national outcry
Source: The Inquirer
URL Source: http://www.philly.com/philly/news/s ... vestigation-race-20180414.html
Published: Apr 14, 2018
Author: Patricia Madej, Joseph N. DiStefano & Ja
Post Date: 2018-04-15 12:36:30 by misterwhite
Keywords: None
Views: 343
Comments: 11

Philadelphia’s mayor’s office and Police Department have begun separate investigations into the arrest of two African American men waiting to meet an acquaintance at a Center City Starbucks on Thursday after a video of the incident was widely shared on social media, triggering national outrage.

Mayor Kenney said in a statement Saturday afternoon that the city’s Commission on Human Relations has been asked to examine Starbucks’ policies and procedures, including whether its training includes safeguards against “implicit bias,” or unconscious stereotyping.

“We are reaching out to Starbucks to begin a discussion about this,” he said.

A police spokesman, meanwhile, said the department’s internal affairs unit is probing the incident at the coffee shop at 18th and Spruce Streets. Police Commissioner Richard Ross said earlier Saturday that officers had acted appropriately.

The video, which was posted by Philadelphia-based author Melissa DePino on Thursday, shows at least six Philadelphia police officers taking the two men into custody without resistance. By 5 p.m. Saturday, the video had gathered nearly 4.3 million views.

In the clip, the two men can be seen being escorted from a table at the cafe in handcuffs while a white man, who has been identified as Philadelphia real estate investor Andrew Yaffe, asks why officers were called and attempts to explain to police that the two men were waiting for him.

“What did they get called for, because there were two black guys sitting here, meeting me?” Yaffe asks in the video. “What did they do?”

Commissioner Ross said in a video posted to Facebook on Saturday afternoon that police responded around 4:40 p.m. Thursday to a 911 call reporting a disturbance. The men had refused to leave the cafe after asking to use the restroom without placing an order, which violated Starbucks policy, staff members told police.

The men were detained after they refused officers’ requests to leave as well, Ross said.

“The police did not just happen upon this event — they did not just walk into Starbucks to get a coffee,” he said. “They were called there, for a service, and that service had to do with quelling a disturbance, a disturbance that had to do with trespassing. These officers did absolutely nothing wrong.”

DePino said in an interview with the Inquirer and Daily News that she posted the video, which was recorded by a woman sitting next to her at the coffee shop, immediately after the men’s arrest, which she said involved about eight officers.

“They did not raise their voices; they were not confrontational,” DePino said of the men. Police “put them in handcuffs and essentially perp-walked them out of the store.”

DePino said she was told by Yaffe that the men were family friends of his and that they had been waiting to meet him about a real estate deal. Reached by phone, Yaffe declined to comment.

Attorney Lauren Wimmer, who agreed to represent the men pro bono after being contacted by Yaffe, said she was told at 12:30 a.m. Friday that the two were being released from custody. She declined to identify the men.

Ross said the men were released after officers became aware that Starbucks “no longer was interested in prosecuting.”

As the video of the men’s detention spread, Starbucks was accused by some of tolerating racism by its staff. Many on social media asserted that the men would not have been treated similarly if they had been white.

The 18th and Spruce location was busy Saturday afternoon despite scattered protests outside the coffee shop. Demonstrator Toni Bowers, who lives nearby, said she was “outraged” by the incident.

As pressure grew, Starbucks released a statement Saturday expressing regret about the incident.

“We apologize to the two individuals and our customers and are disappointed this led to an arrest,” the chain said. “We take these matters seriously and clearly have more work to do when it comes to how we handle incidents in our stores. We are reviewing our policies and will continue to engage with the community and the police department to try to ensure these types of situations never happen in any of our stores.”

Kenney said in his Saturday afternoon statement calling for a review of Starbucks policies that the incident “appears to exemplify what racial discrimination looks like in 2018.”

“Like all retail establishments in our city, Starbucks should be a place where everyone is treated the same, no matter the color of their skin,” he said. “Starbucks has issued an apology, but that is not enough.”

Police spokesman Troy T. Brown, meanwhile, said the department’s internal affairs investigation is “active and ongoing.”

“We are a department that’s always looking to enhance and improve upon ways that we do things,” Ross said in his Facebook video. “In cases like this, we will examine this one, and similar ones to see if there are things that we can do better.”

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#1. To: misterwhite (#0)

They should have shaved.

Fred Mertz  posted on  2018-04-15   12:39:02 ET  Reply   Trace   Private Reply  


#2. To: All (#0)

Many on social media asserted that the men would not have been treated similarly if they had been white

Correct. They would have left when asked. Ot at least had the courtesy to order something.

But one thing I can guarantee. If they were treated similarly, it would not be national news.

misterwhite  posted on  2018-04-15   12:39:28 ET  Reply   Trace   Private Reply  


#3. To: misterwhite (#2)

I went to some Christmas festival at night in Louisville several years ago.

I had to take a leak. I believe it cost me $2.89 for a small drink, maybe $1.89.

My next urination was in the alley near my car for free!

Fred Mertz  posted on  2018-04-15   13:20:58 ET  Reply   Trace   Private Reply  


#4. To: misterwhite (#0)

Commissioner Ross said in a video posted to Facebook on Saturday afternoon that police responded around 4:40 p.m. Thursday to a 911 call reporting a disturbance. The men had refused to leave the cafe after asking to use the restroom without placing an order, which violated Starbucks policy, staff members told police.

The FIENDS! I hope they were backed against a wall and shot for asking to use the bathroom! Who the hell do they think they are,Americans?

These guys were very,very smart. I saw this on tv,and they never raised their voices or tried to resist. They are both going to end up with a little cash in their pockets down the road.

This sort of crap is inexcusable! I am glad they kept their cool because now Starbucks has no defense,and they are going to have to pay through the nose.

In the entire history of the world,the only nations that had to build walls to keep their own citizens from leaving were those with leftist governments.

sneakypete  posted on  2018-04-15   13:24:29 ET  Reply   Trace   Private Reply  


#5. To: misterwhite (#2)

Many on social media asserted that the men would not have been treated similarly if they had been white

Correct. They would have left when asked. Ot at least had the courtesy to order something.

But one thing I can guarantee. If they were treated similarly, it would not be national news.

All true,but that doesn't excuse any of it. Starbucks has a policy of NOT demanding you buy anything from them to sit at a table,and AFAIK,the law pretty much everywhere demands any retail outlet that sells food and drinks to have a public restroom.

In the entire history of the world,the only nations that had to build walls to keep their own citizens from leaving were those with leftist governments.

sneakypete  posted on  2018-04-15   13:26:18 ET  Reply   Trace   Private Reply  


#6. To: Fred Mertz (#3)

I had to take a leak. I believe it cost me $2.89 for a small drink, maybe $1.89.

And you weren't handcuffed or arrested or nuffin'. Just 'cause you're white, I bet.

misterwhite  posted on  2018-04-15   14:06:10 ET  Reply   Trace   Private Reply  


#7. To: misterwhite (#0)

Let me say I have not seen the video.

If they were treated like they were "White"? You mean no one would have ever heard what happen! There would be no fake outrage? You mean nothing would have happen other than the men would have had to bail out of jail and would have had to hire expensive lawyers to get them off with timed served!

If only they were treated like "White" men!!!!

Here are some questions for everyone. How long were they there and why not buy something while taking up space? If they were waiting for a friend how come the cops beat his friend there after being called by the store to deal with this?

Are we going to have to go through this every time some non white(Really just Black people) feel the chip was knocked off their racist shoulders???

When will this reverse racism stop?

Justified  posted on  2018-04-15   15:35:42 ET  Reply   Trace   Private Reply  


#8. To: misterwhite (#0)

the city’s Commission on Human Relations has been asked to examine Starbucks’ policies and procedures, including whether its training includes safeguards against “implicit bias,” or unconscious stereotyping.

Translation: "Ignore the fact that blacks commit criminal acts at a rate FAR higher than their percentage of the population."

Hank Rearden  posted on  2018-04-15   16:19:46 ET  Reply   Trace   Private Reply  


#9. To: All (#0)

immediately after the men’s arrest, which she said involved about eight officers.

Yep. Which is the reason they went quietly. Had there been only one or two officers, I'm betting there would have been shots fired.

misterwhite  posted on  2018-04-15   17:12:33 ET  Reply   Trace   Private Reply  


#10. To: Hank Rearden (#8)

blacks commit criminal acts at a rate FAR higher than their percentage of the population."

Which is why I engage in conscious stereotyping. And whose fault is that? Ain't mine.

misterwhite  posted on  2018-04-15   17:16:27 ET  Reply   Trace   Private Reply  


#11. To: misterwhite (#6)

Just 'cause you're white, I bet.

You're half right, whitey. No, make that 5/8ths.

Fred Mertz  posted on  2018-04-16   14:42:46 ET  Reply   Trace   Private Reply  


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