The vice president of sneakers and men’s footwear at Versace claims he was racially profiled by police while shopping in Beverly Hills.
In the video, Salehe Bembury recorded himself talking and showing his shopping bag while the officers surrounded him. “So, I’m in Beverly Hills right now and I’m getting fucking searched for shopping at the store I work for and just being Black,” he said in the short clip. The officer then interrupts him and says that he is making the situation a “completely different narrative.”
The officers let him go after they checked his ID and saw that his record was clean. Bembury explained the incident in detail in a series of videos on his Instagram story.
He says he was just leaving the Versace store when the officers pulled up and quickly confronted him over jaywalking. Bembury says he told the cops that he was not aware that he had jaywalked, but the officers patted him down and took his cellphone anyway.
He then asked if he could have his phone back to record the incident. “Know your fucking rights because in the moment, I honestly forgot if I could legally record it or not,” he said. “I’ve been told many times that I could, but in the moment, I was just scared.”
Since the incident went viral, celebrities have shown support for Bembury. Donatella Versace reposted the incident to her instagram page and said what he experienced was “totally unacceptable.”
“I am appalled this happened to Salehe Bembury today,” she captioned the post. “He has been a consultant at Versace for a long time and the behavior he experienced is totally unacceptable. He was stopped on the street solely for the color of his skin. Stay strong @salehebembury. Sending you love and support x.”
Check out the videos below.