When Bob Marley was alive, he fought for equality, love and compassion. Now, his granddaughter fights the same fight against a biased white neighbor who called 911 on her and her friends for taking their luggage out of an Airbnb.
On April 30, Donisha Prendergast, the 33-year-old filmmaker and relative of the infamous reggae singer, was leaving a California Airbnb with two of her friends, who were also Black. While they were taking their bags from the home and placing them in a truck, they were accused of burgling the home by a neighbor, reported The San Bernardino Sun.
After they departed, officers with the Rialto Police Department pulled Prendergast over in the San Bernardino suburb and said a neighbor saw "three black people stealing stuff."
"Like breaking into the house and taking stuff," the officer said in a video recorded by Prendergast.
After over 20 minutes of questioning, police finally realize Prendergast and her friends — Kells Fyffee Marshall and Komi-Oluwa Olafimihan — were "Airbnb renters and were at the residence as guests,” according to police.
Both Prendergast and Marshall discussed their experience on Instagram.
"Got surrounded by the police for being black in a white neighbourhood. Smh," Prendergast wrote in an Instagram post.
"I'm sad and irritated to see that fear is still the first place police officers go in their pursuit to serve and protect, to the point that protocol supersedes their ability to have discernment," she added. "Many have suffered and died in moments like these. That's a crazy reality check. Give Thanks for life, and the ability to stand our ground."
Although the department said Prendergast and the two other guests were never restrained as officers contacted the rental owner "to confirm there had been no crime committed,” the trio served the Rialto Police Department with notice of a pending lawsuit on Monday.
A rep for Prendergast declined to comment further but pledged to release a longer version of the video and details of the pending lawsuit.
She is being represented by Miami-based lawyer Jasmine Rand.