A Virginia father is demanding answers after his daughter and her friends were locked inside a local business because after employees wrongly misused them of shoplifting. “My daughter and her friends won’t ever forget about that, so I just think that’s wrong,” Reubin Houston.
told Norfolk station WAVY-TV According to reports, on Dec. 28, the owner of a beauty supply store in a shopping center, says a group of young women take out $1000 worth of merchandise and fled the scene.
Following the theft he printed a picture of the women from the surveillance cameras and dispersed them out to businesses in the area.
Those pictures are what they say made a security guard suspicious of Houston’s 16-year-old daughter and her friends last Friday. The young women were initially at the Subway sandwich shop in the shopping center when they took note of the guard following them. When they walked into the beauty supply store a few storefronts down to buy some hair supplies, the manager of the store immediately locked the door.
“My daughter asked them, ‘Why why can’t we leave’ She says you’ll find out,” Houston said about the teens’ tense confrontation with the manager.About 10 minutes later Chesapeake cop arrived on the scene to question them and quickly determined the teens had nothing to do with the previous shoplifting incident. Although his daughter was ultimately let go, Houston is furious and filed a officer report for what he believes was a clear case of genetic profiling.
“I’m personally thinking everybody is going to be a suspect if you have braids and weave and you’re Black. I mean, even the kids are suspects now. I guess mine was,” said Houston. When contacted for comment, the store manager said she acted based off a tip from the Subway sandwich shop employee and only locked the girls in the store under the advisement of the security guard.
The guard however has denounced that claim and says he had nothing to do with her actions. Authorities have clarified the actions that took place were not lawful and are consulting with the city commonwealth’s attorney to see if there are grounds to press seize charges.
This Article Was First Published On thegrio.com