The Royal Oak Police Department is apologizing to a Black man who was stopped for nearly 20 minutes after a white woman called to report that the man was “looking suspiciously” at her.
Royal Oak Police claim the department completed an internal review of the Tuesday (August 13) incident and say that officers and supervisors did not handle the situation correctly.
In a statement, the police chief and city manager said the officers had no legal right to insist that Devin Myers provide identification. They also claim the officer who originally stopped Myers is a probationary officer who made a mistake.
"On behalf of the police department, I would like to apologize to Mr. Myers for how he was treated,” Police Chief Corrigan O'Donohue stated. “What should have been a very short encounter was extended when the officer involved insisted on getting Mr. Myers’ identification. The officer had no legal right to demand the identification and should have simply advised Mr. Myers why we were there and allowed him to go on his way. The officer involved is a new, probationary officer and he made a mistake. This officer will be provided with remedial training to address this issue.
"The responding supervisor did not handle this situation in a manner I expect Royal Oak supervisors to conduct themselves. He did quickly advise Mr. Myers that he was free to go; however, he did not effectively look into the situation or allow those present the opportunity to express their concerns."
The chief added the practice was "not acceptable" and the supervisor has been disciplined. He also claims and Royal Oak Police supervisor would receive additional training.
Four Royal Oaks, Michigan, police officers reportedly stopped a 20-year-old Black man on the street last Thursday (August 8) after a white woman called 911 because he “looked suspiciously” at her.
Devin Myers was trying to go into a vegetarian restaurant but was questioned by at least four officers on the sidewalk outside of the establishment.
Video was captured by a bystander who said a white woman called the officers after Myers looked at her while he was parking his car.
“This young man is stopped because a Caucasian lady said that he looked at her suspiciously and he has been pulled over walking going to eat by two police officers for suspicion of being Black,” the woman said in the video.
The bystander also says the woman who called the cops was sitting in her car across the street watching the confrontation play out.
In the video, Myers is seen being calm throughout the ordeal and apologizes to the officers for wasting their time.
The two officers who originally responded to the call said they wanted to wait for a supervisor to come to the scene after Myers objected to being questioned by them.
Myers is heard telling the officers he is not a threat to the woman.
The owner of the restaurant, also a white woman, came outside and defended Myers, repeatedly explaining to the officers there was no problem and suggesting the call to police was racist.
Myers was eventually told he could leave the scene.
None of the officers who responded have been identified publicly and their department claims they’re investigating the incident.