Three black women who had been staying in an Airbnb located in Rialto, California had the unfortunate experience ruined as they checked out of the exquisite property. When a white neighbor called the police on the women as she assumed they were robbing the house because they were dragging their luggage to their vehicle backed into the driveway. Squad cars showed up like the final scene in Set It Off and these ladies’ unfortunate getaway turned ugly. Interestingly enough it was revealed by one of the officers, the white lady allegedly called the cops because they ladies didn’t “wave” to her. And this is where we say &%#@! if you don’t get yourself a damn life!!
As these ladies experienced the most unsavory encounter, the caller has not received any discipline for her actions too. Who the hell calls the police because they didn’t get waved at or acknowledged on the block…white women that’s who??
These insensitive white folk have absolutely nothing else to do but pick up a phone and exercise their white privilege. Why not just simply say f**k you, don’t speak and go on about your day. Hmmpf….guess that would be the diplomatic way to go about it!
Read more as reported by CNN:
At first, Kelly Fyffe-Marshall’s stay in Rialto, California, was ending pretty normally. She and her four friends — three of them black women — checked out of their Airbnb rental and dragged their luggage to their vehicle.
Then things got weird.
Seven police cars showed up. The neighborhood was seemingly locked down.
Then things got scary.
The police told Fyffe-Marshall and her friends to put their hands in the air, and then informed them a helicopter was tracking them.
Why all the commotion?
Someone had called the police on them, thinking they might be burglars.
‘You want to laugh … but it’s not funny’
Fyffe-Marshall, a filmmaker, detailed her experience in a Facebook post that caught fire this past weekend.
“A neighbor across the street saw 3 black people packing luggage into their car and assumed we were stealing from the house. She then called the police,” Fyffe-Marshall wrote.
“At first we joked about the misunderstanding and took photos and videos along the way. About 20 minutes into this misunderstanding it escalated almost instantly.”
STORY TIME: During our time in Cali we have been staying at an Airbnb. The 30th was our second morning and at about 11am we checked out. The four of us packed our bags, locked up the house and left. As you can see 3 of us were Black. About 10 seconds later we were surrounded by 7 cop cars. The officers came out of their cars demanding us to put our hands in the air. They informed us that there was also a helicopter tracking us. They locked down the neighborhood and had us standing in the street. Why? A neighbour across the street saw 3 black people packing luggage into their car and assumed we were stealing from the house. She then called the police. At first we joked about the misunderstanding and took photos and videos along the way. About 20 minutes into this misunderstanding it escalated almost instantly. Their Sergeant arrived… he explained they didn’t know what Airbnb was. He insisted that we were lying about it and said we had to prove it. We showed them the booking confirmations and phoned the landlord… because they didn’t know what she looked like on the other end to confirm it was her.. they detained us – because they were investigating a felony charge – for 45 minutes while they figured it out. He made me show my ID and made it clear I was being tagged. We have been dealing with different emotions and you want to laugh about this but it’s not funny. The trauma is real. I’ve been angry, fustrated and sad. This is insanity. The cops admit that the woman’s reason for calling the police was because we didn’t WAVE to her as she looked at us putting our luggage into our car from her lawn. But they pulled over three filmmakers! We documented it all!!!!! #wedidntwave #arighttoberight #racialprofiling #privilege #rightourstories #therevolution #whenyoupulloverfilmmakers @shaunking @amandaseales @iamdonisha @komiolaf @ahutchphoto
A police sergeant showed up, Fyffe-Marshall says in her account, and said he didn’t know what Airbnb was. The group showed the police their booking confirmations and phoned the home’s landlord to convince police they were telling the truth.
The entire episode lasted a frustratingly long 45 minutes, she said.
“We have been dealing with different emotions and you want to laugh about this but it’s not funny,” she wrote. “The trauma is real. I’ve been angry, frustrated and sad. I was later detained at the airport. This is insanity.”
Rialto Police Lt. Dean Hardin told CNN the person who called police was an elderly white woman, and she did not recognize the women as being her neighbors. Hardin could not speak to the allegation the group was targeted due to their race.
“I cannot get into the caller’s head, beyond that she thought she was seeing a crime,” Hardin said.
Police said in a news release the encounter took 22 minutes and that “through reasonable inquiry officers learned the residence was an unlicensed Airbnb.” The group of women were “immediately released without incident” after the incident, the release states.
“At no time during the encounter did officers use any form of restraints with the involved people and actually allowed them to exit their vehicle and assist officers in locating the owner of the unlicensed Airbnb,” the release reads.
On Monday, the release said, the Rialto Police Department was served with a notification of pending legal action on behalf of Donisha Prendergast, who police said is the granddaughter of singer/songwriter Bob Marley. Fyffe-Marshall and another woman, Komi-Oluwa Olafimihan, were also listed on the legal notification with Prendergast.
CNN contacted Fyffe-Marshall, who said her attorney, who also is representing the other two women, told them not to comment at this time.
While the department said it is now “limited in response,” it said in the release that the department “was a pioneer in the nation’s implementation of Axon body worn officer cameras.”
Airbnb said in a statement to CNN that it has reached out to the women to “express our sympathy and full support.” The company also said what happened was “unconscionable and a reminder of how far we still have to go as a society.”
“Airbnb’s mission is to create a world where anyone can belong anywhere and we have aggressively worked to fight bias and discrimination in society,” the company’s statement said. “We are also reaching out to our partners at the NAACP, National Action Network, Color Of Change, and others to discuss this matter and ensure we are doing all we can to protect our community when they travel.”