After wanting an expensive belt for a while Trayon Christian, a 19 year-old studying to be an engineer, decided to splurge right after his paycheck was directly deposited into his account. He went to Barneys — the once trendy, but clearly still snooty — clothing store.
Even though he had been coveting the accessory for quite some time after seeing some celebrities wear it, Christian had never been to Barneys before. He bought the belt, offering his debit card.
Since a transaction like this can only be completed with sufficient funds in the account this was not the issue. The young black male was thought to be using someone else’s credit card. After making the purchase, Christian was a block from the store when he was confronted by two New York City policemen. They accused him of fraud, saying that someone from Barney’s had called to report it.
Long/short, the student was arrested, held for two hours and finally released with his ID, belt and an apology from the Department.
Christian has never been in trouble and the police quickly learned that the debit card he used was his.
But something was taken from the teenager that day.
He returned the belt to Barneys to get his money back from a store he now views as racist.
And he is suing both them and the police department.
As Christian now knows, sporting a coveted designer belt is not nearly as important as standing up for your dignity.
h/t: Huffington Post