19-year-old Trayon Christian–the young man who was nabbed at Barneys after purchasing a $350 Salvatore Ferragamo belt. Police questioned his ability of being able to afford the belt and he rebutted with a lawsuit for the NYPD and the luxury department store. The publicity Christian’s claim received has inspired others to come forward, like Kayla Phillips and even celebrities like Tyson Beckford and Robert Brown, star of “Finding Forrester.”
It’s officially a “Shopping While Black” epidemic out here in these NYC streets! Tyson has come forward claiming that he’s been profiled at Barneys just like Kayla and Trayon.”I might have the most recognizable face in the world, but I still get followed all the time anytime I go in that store. It’s sad,” Tyson said exclusively to Pix 11 News outside the Barneys store in NYC.
Robert Brown is now suing Macy’s in NYC’s Herald Square, claiming he was allegedly and unlawfully stopped and searched while shopping for a watch in June. Brown just wants justice, not money. Robert’s attorney, John Eleftrekais told the New York Post, “The bottom line is…this isn’t about money, this about proving a point.” Police officers ran up to Brown, arrested him and then kept him in a jail cell in Macy’s,” Elefterakis told the Post. Brown handed over his ID, only to be told it was a fake and that he “could not afford to make such an expensive purchase,” according to the Manhattan Supreme Court suit.Wow, what the heck is happening!? Why do so many retail security members think they can be the judgment call on what Black shoppers can and cannot afford. And seriously–Macy’s? Who can’t anything at Macy’s when everything is always 60 percent or more off?
And you know who is still not piping in? Jay Z. The mogul is known for not immediately responding to any controversy involving his name. I have a feeling there will be a song that comes out addressing the issue with clever double entendres.