The Latest: Mayor calls for probe of Starbucks policies
PHILADELPHIA (AP) — The Latest on the arrest of two black men in a Philadelphia Starbucks (all times local):
The mayor of Philadelphia has ordered a city commission to review policies at Starbucks after the arrest of two black men prompted social media users to accuse the company of racial discrimination.
Videos posted online show officers handcuffing the men in the downtown Philadelphia establishment on Thursday.
Mayor Jim Kenney said Saturday he was “heartbroken” to see the city in the headlines for an incident that appears at this point “to exemplify what racial discrimination looks like in 2018.”
Kenney says he’s asked the Commission on Human Relations to examine the company’s policies and procedures “including the extent of, or need for, implicit bias training for its employees.”
The city’s police commissioner defended the arrests, saying employees said the men wanted to use the restroom but were denied because they hadn’t bought anything. He says they repeatedly refused to leave.
Philadelphia’s police commissioner is defending his officers’ decision to arrest two black men at a Starbucks that prompted social media users to call the incident “racist.”
Videos posted online show officers handcuffing the men in the downtown establishment Thursday.
Commissioner Richard Ross said Starbucks employees called police to say the men were trespassing. He said they came in to use the restroom but were denied because they hadn’t bought anything.
Ross, who is black, said police asked the men to leave three times but they refused. They were arrested and released. Ross said his officers “did absolutely nothing wrong.”
There was no mention of the white man in the video who said he was meeting with the men. He called the arrest “ridiculous” on video.
Starbucks tweeted an apology Saturday.