When two Black men went shopping at a T-Mobile in Fresno, California, their exciting time out ended with them staring down the barrel of a gun.
Last Monday, 26-year-old Dorian Johnson, accompanied his uncle Vincent Lemar, went to the cellular store so Lemar could get a new iPhone. After the two were dropped off by Johnson’s girlfriend, they began to shop. At some point during their time in the store, an employee notified the shopping center’s security desk about a burglary, reported the Fresno Bee.
Soon after, Fresno police arrived on scene and Johnson was ordered to the ground.
Lemar recorded a video, which shows Johnson lying face down on the ground while an officer points a gun at him. Johnson’s girlfriend, Gloria Bush, can also be seen screaming from the parking lot.
"All I saw was guns pointed at my babies' daddy, and he was on the ground. I didn't know if they had already shot him," Bush, 23, told the Fresno Bee. "I said, 'Tell me what's going on. I know he's a good man. I know he wasn't here with bad intentions."
Although the video cuts out, the audio continues when Lemar is ordered outside by the officers.
"What are you guys doing in there?" one officer asked in the clip.
"Just trying to get a new phone," Lemar replied.
When Bush approached the scene, the officer told her to stay back. "Wait a second and we'll explain, OK," the officer said.
"We got called here, OK, we didn’t just randomly show up here,” a different officer claimed.
Although Johnson and Lemar were detained and handcuffed, they were not arrested or charged. Lemar believes all the blame should be placed on the store for than racial profiling.
"This was racial profiling at its finest. Prejudice in its precipice," Lemar said on Facebook. "And T-Mobile should do something about this highly uncalled for but totally avoidable misunderstanding."
When Johnson spoke with the Fresno Bee, he teared up telling the story.
"I don't see what made them call and what would have given them the suspicion that they were going to get robbed. We weren't up to anything," Johnson said. "It's just crazy. I don't understand. Nobody not once came and apologized for what happened."
He even referenced other videos of Black people having the police called on them.
"I was just watching videos about that stuff the other day. To be in the same situation myself, it just scared the [expletive] out of me," Johnson tearfully said. "Every time I think about it I get teary-eyed. It was the day before my 3-year-old daughter's birthday."
The men put the blame on store workers for racially profiling them, and say nothing they did hinted at a potential robbery.
T-Mobile issued the following statement:
"The safety and comfort of our customers, our TPR dealers and their employees is paramount to us. We are taking this incident very seriously and are actively investigating to determine exactly what occurred. Though we have found no evidence that the employees acted improperly, we would take definitive action if we did."
(Photo: Artsanova/Getty Images)