Report: Harvard Scholar Henry Louis Gates Arrest Avoidable

Report: Henry Louis Gates' arrest was avoidable.

Posted: 07/01/2010 05:15 AM EDT

BOSTON (AP) — An independent review of last year's arrest of black Harvard scholar Henry Louis Gates Jr. by a white police sergeant says both men missed opportunities to "ratchet down" the situation and end things more calmly.

The review was released Wednesday. It says "misunderstandings and failed communications" and a "certain degree of fear" each man had for the other led to the confrontation.

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It was compiled by a 12-member panel assembled in September.

Cambridge Sgt. James Crowley arrested Gates for disorderly conduct at his home July 16 while investigating a possible burglary. Gates alleged he was a victim of racial profiling. Charges were later dropped.

The conflict sparked a national debate on race relations, and President Barack Obama invited both men to the White House for a "beer summit."

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