VIDEO: Police Reveal 'Men Arrested For Being Black At Starbucks' Is A Lie

Commissioner Richard Ross released the circumstances behind the lawful arrest.

Philadelphia, PA - Philadelphia PD Commissioner Richard Ross released a statement on Saturday with the details behind the now-viral video which shows the arrest of two black men in a Philly Starbucks.

The video (below) was initially posted to Twitter by witness Melissa DePino on Thursday.

In the video, two black males could be seen being calmly arrested at Spruce and South 18th streets.

DePino posted, "The police were called because these men hadn’t ordered anything. They were waiting for a friend to show up, who did as they were taken out in handcuffs for doing nothing. All the other white ppl are wondering why it’s never happened to us when we do the same thing."

She later followed up in a tweet which said, "Ever since I posted this, I’ve had white strangers AND friends say 'there must be something more to this story.' That assumption is a big part of the problem. It does happen. All the time. Just not to you and me. Believe it and speak up."

However, there was actually more to the story, which DePino was forced to admit after Commissioner Ross released the details.

In a recorded statement on Saturday, Commissioner Ross stated that on Thursday at around 4:40 p.m. police received a 911 call for a disturbance and trespassing at the Starbucks.

When officers arrived, they were met by Starbucks employees who told them that two males were trespassing and refused to leave.

The employees told officers that the two males had come in, sat down, then later decided to use the restroom.

The coffee shop had a policy that only paying customers may use the restroom. The employees asked the men to leave and they refused.

The employees told the men that the police would be called and they said, "Go ahead and call police, we don't care."

The officers then spoke with the men and asked them to leave because they were on private property and the employees wanted them to leave, and the men refused.

The officers called for a supervisor so that the situation wouldn't get out of hand, and on three occasions they politely asked the men to leave.

Instead, the men told the officers that they were not leaving and there was some rhetoric about "you don't know what you are doing, you're only a $45,000 per year employee," or something to that regard, according to Commissioner Ross.

Because the men refused to leave and Starbucks had called them about the trespassing disturbance, the men were arrested for trespassing.

After officers transported the men to be processed, they discovered that Starbucks was no longer interested in pressing charges. The men were then released.

"It is important to emphasize and underscore that these officers had legal standing to make this arrest," Commissioner Ross said. "Again, they were called to the scene because employees said that they were trespassing. It is important for me to say, in short, that these officers did absolutely nothing wrong. They followed policy. They did what they were supposed to do. They were professional in all their dealings with these gentlemen, and instead, they got the opposite back."

"I will say that as an African-American male, I am very aware of implicit bias," the commissioner continued. "We are committed to fair and unbiased policing, and anything less than that will not be tolerated in this department."

The commissioner went on to explain that every one of these recruits get bias training.

"Something else that I want to highlight..." Commissioner Ross added. "I can tell you that there was a case involving one of our sergeants, probably a couple years ago, who went to Starbucks in full uniform and he was also denied access to the restroom. So they are at least consistent in their policy."

"These officers did absolutely nothing wrong, and did a service that they were called to do," the commissioner concluded. " And if you think about it logically, that if a busienss calls and says that 'someone is here that I no longer wish to be in my business', [the officers] now have a legal obligation to carry out their duties, and they did just that."

After the police commissioner's statement, DePino admitted that she left some details out of her story. She posted, "Yes, the two men were asked to leave @Starbucks, as the Philly Police said in their statement, but they sat there peacefully and had the nerve to ask WHY they were being asked to leave. What counts as peaceful protest? Isn't that what this is?!"

Starbucks responded with an apology and said that they will be reviewing their store policies.

You can see the video of the incident below:

Comments (47)
No. 1-47
LEO0301
LEO0301

Of course, let's make this about race. That's the way we role in today's society. It's never about the possibility the person actually broke the law, right @Hi_estComnDenomn?

BurgessKrell
BurgessKrell

So Starbucks wants non-paying groups loitering on their property. That won't cause any problems /s

rover77
rover77

it's a business, not a hang out , and when they refused to leave and ran their moths...oh well,as for Ms Pinheads 'peaceful protest' theory...again, it's a business not the town square

biggcas
biggcas

Well now that they have apologized to the "individuals" and "customers" how about apologizing to the police officers involved who are now being labeled as racists, all Philadelphia PD officers who will have to deal with the backlash, and to the police profession as a whole. You asked for a service which was provided professionally. These officers acted in good faith and you left them hang. Shameful. I walked by a Starbucks today and thought about buying a coffee but kept walking. I'm glad I didn't spend one cent at the place. Oh, and depino you are shameful too for grandstanding and giving half the story .

RunCop
RunCop

So the asshole management at Starbucks call the police wanting trespasser removed. Black dumbshits refused and are arrested. So what's the problem? Then assholes at Starbucks issue apology and ' review' of their policies.....then some white apoligist boo hoo's about it!

blueriverrose
blueriverrose

Melissa DePino, so you think it is O.K. for you to bash Police who were just doing their job,
What you were really trying to do was agitate the situation, make it all about Police being racist so you could have a trending tweet on twitter
and don't try to claim the moral high ground... you left out half the story trying to make it sound worse than it really was...
you even felt the need to follow up with another tweet about white strangers and friends questioning your story... wondering if there was more involved... and you suggested they were racist for not accepting your version without question... suggesting they were part of the problem...
Looks to me like YOU are the problem... next time why don't you just keep your nose out of something that is clearly none of your business... or you just might find yourself on the wrong side of a defamation lawsuit.

DocRyder
DocRyder

It is about race. My bet is had the two been white and all else equal, no apology would be forthcoming from Starbucks.

darksol
darksol

ok Lord some bent conservative blog trying to pretend that this is actually happened where you say it happened These two young men were waiting for their friend before they ordered and yet you're trying to spin this blue lives matter my ass all lives matter my ass what you really mean is my white ass there is no need to spin the story But you have to black lives matter is a terrorist group and only blue live matter then never say all lives matter ever again

satmantoo
satmantoo

De Pinhead doesn’t have a clue of what she speaks!! As a White American! I’m sixty five years old and yes I’ve been told many times in my life that I couldn’t use the bathroom unless I was a paying customer. If I needed the bathroom that bad and there wasn’t any other alternative I would buy a soda and then say “hang on to my soda, I need to use your restroom”.
Peaceful protest my ass!!

Grog
Grog

Always about race and never, EVER, the behavior. Right?

mysterio2
mysterio2

Except for (1) the fact that Starbucks explicitly represents itself as a sort of town square, a 'Third Space'; and (2) anyone who's ever been to a Starbucks knows that it is routinely used as a hangout by many people and very often Starbucks actively encourages this use by patrons. The issue here is thus one of selective policy enforcement. As you should well know being an LEO, private businesses have the right to enforce policies regulating behavior of people in their businesses but these policies cannot be enforced in a manner having discriminatory impact.

I would agree with you that the officers behaved courteously and professionally and were not in any way at fault in how they handled the situation. The issue I have isn't with the officers, who were put in the position they found themselves in by the business, but I do have profound doubts about how Starbucks handled the situation.

PADDYWAGON
PADDYWAGON

.....Totally staged event........

Ladyfluterby
Ladyfluterby

Can't help but wonder if this was a total social justice set up between Melissa DePino and one or more of the of the employees in Starbucks. After all it was the employees who called the police in the first place and she just HAPPENED to be there to video.

Thumper1960
Thumper1960

Order a freakin' coffee, then. The place of business isn't a public parking lot so your fat rear can sit there and take up real estate until your "friend" decides to grace the place with his presence. Or, is it that the rules others must follow don't apply to you because of your being so special? That must be it. You want special privileges just "because". As for your BLM terrorist organization, go complain to the Feds. They seem to think BLM is a terror group. Personally, I believe it's populated with morons and idiots who can't comprehend that playing in traffic MIGHT get you run over. But then, Darwin did state that idiots tend to die off and the smarter members of a species live to breed.

Katarina
Katarina

Starbucks again? Looks like they use these stunts just for the free publicity. They got it. I've never set foot in a Starbucks and never would. This looked like a complete set up. Let the SJWs spend their money in these dives. How can they make a cup of coffee when they don't understand their own policy.

Mic911
Mic911

Why is it that every time an African-American is arrested or whatever, the race card is always thrown out?? Makes me sick, there are plenty of other races in this country and you NEVER see anything said about them. You wonder why our country is in the shape it is....no RESPECT that is why!!! What the hell difference does it make make the color of your skin? You break the law/rules you face consequences.

darksol
darksol

oh well I'll I rather a good person and not judge people I rather not judge all police officers for the abuse of the minority but you bluelivesmatter people completely ignore the abuse of some of the police you people make this a culture war and felt threatened this site is not dedicated to police it's dedicated to racial cultural War pretending to be righteous and their defense a police and it appeals to judgemental and biased this site does not seek truth in journalism it stinks prejudice echo-chamber nonsense oh well I had bad punctuation don't give a f* they are always been corrupt police that have power trips but go ahead and completely ignore that

ragnarok1943
ragnarok1943

Starbucks called the Police for two trespassers. The Police did not call Starbucks to see if they could arrest someone. So many social justice warriors running around loose with no parental supervision. Again, anytime blacks are questioned or arrested by police, out come the race card.

Eaglescout
Eaglescout

This is Starbucks fault, period. These cops were professional and calm. Sux Starbucks put them in this position.

LEO0301
LEO0301

That's a ridiculous statement. I travel A LOT and have never witnessed the discrimination you all speak of. Many times the examples provided of this supposed discrimination happens to whites, Asians, Hispanics, etc as well. In other words it's not because of your skin color but because of your actions. The most overused word in today's society is "racist". It no longer means anything because like the boy that cried wolf, people no longer pay attention.

iamjustavoice
iamjustavoice

Check your brotherhood and see how many are affiiated with the KKK.

T-III
T-III

If the Police version is factual, the two men -I don't think you can determine who is a "gentleman" and who isn't w/out having even met him- were not just wrong but very wrong, while the Police was polite! If it had been me and I considered myself wronged by the business, I'd have waited for the party meeting me and suggested that we go elsewhere. Just like I no longer patronise a certain hardware chain that treats you as a POSSIBLE shoplifter by asking you to produce your receipt at the exit, even if you paid for your purchase RIGHT UNDER THE GUARD'S NOSE.

BurgessKrell
BurgessKrell

Were they purchasing a product from ScrewBucks? If not then they were loitering and ScrewBucks had a right to have them removed regardless of what color they were.

gregblue
gregblue

This looks like a setup to me. Two black men came into Starbucks, did not purchase anything, but wanted to use the bathroom. The manager told them the bathroom is for paying customers per corporate policy and if they were not going to purchase anything they needed to leave. They refused and were told by the manager that she would be calling the police, because they were trespassing. The police responded and told the two men they needed to purchase something or they would have to leave, because the manager informed them that she wanted them arrested for trespassing if they did not purchase anything and refused to leave. They refused to purchase something and refused to leave so they were arrested for trespassing. The whole incident was being filmed, which leads me to believe it was a setup. Afterwards Starbucks refused to prosecute and the two were released. The cowardly CEO did not back his employees and already sucked up to the two men. No one asked the CEO if the store manager was correct about corporate policy regarding non paying "customers." Starbucks is an anti-Trump and anti-police company that said iy would hire 10000 Muslims to work in their stores. The mayor also chimed in talking about RACISM. So I am sure Starbucks will be paying out some bucks. My question is who goes to Starbucks and overpays for their swill?

SgtBarrett
SgtBarrett

So once again some black guys think they own the world and that the world owes them something and so they should be able to go wherever and do whatever they want, even on someone else's property.

SgtBarrett
SgtBarrett

America is so screwed...

All lives matter
All lives matter

It is the other way around. The white manager thinks she owns everything. If you read other real sites, it will state how they were waiting for a friend. Plus there were people who stated they been there longer then the two and never ordered nothing. So again tell me how this has nothing to do about being black.

TheBen
TheBen

As America succumbs to fascism, the legal system is skewed, and good cops are having more and more difficulty salvaging their reputation because of the apparent preponderance of bad cops who are supported and given cover by fascist appointed judges.

spanky007
spanky007

we can thank the race-baiting mass media for making victims out of the uninformed and uneducated. Bad enough we have the race card shakedown crews like al sharpton- ex coke dealer and advisor to obama- and jesse jackson. scam artists.

RunCop
RunCop

Ah, the race card from the never-ending deck!

DenCon
DenCon

I have never been to a Starbucks, nor ever drank their coffee, because they are nothing but a liberal, facist company. I wish we could say good riddance to them

qazwiz
qazwiz

it is obvious by her actions, denial followed by admitting truth without any credible apology, and especially by her repeated inflaming the incident in extra tweets, that Melissa DePino is an SJW Shit Troll, it is only conclusion a Logical and sane person could deuce via the facts ...especially how her video conveniently was edited to omit everything that happened before the planted "victims" were handcuffed.

... out of context even Santa Claus is a creepy Child Stalker worthy of decades in prison

BlueGladiator
BlueGladiator

Or nation of Islam, Black Panthers

nomorecommonsense
nomorecommonsense

It is a private business. Whether or not it is in their best interests, they have every right to tell someone to leave. It doesn't even matter the reason, they can refuse somone's business or occupancy if they choose to do so. If I was put in that situation either I would say, "ok, I'm not returning to this location", or " I understand, what's the cheapest thing on your menu, since I understand you're a business and you have it in your interests to keep the homeless and people loitering under control, and not just swarming your store and taking up space and making things uncomfortable for other patrons". Once, or rather, if, Starbucks releases the video from the actual cameras inside the store, then you can make a rational opinion. Considering the men themselves said it was two minutes before the police were called, which would be an extremely quick conversation by the way, I have no reason to believe anything that was said in the video recorded and spread around the ridiculous media that we had nowadays. If that video even contradicts the time period stated, then it should be a cut and dry case of them just lying to try and claim racism. On top of that, they had multiple opportunities to leave but they refused, so they were taken in as a result. Their own actions led to this, just like a majority of the so called, "Black lives matter," protests.

prudent.person
prudent.person

It appears the real victims are the police officers. They were called (SUMMONED) to do their jobs by Starbucks. The officers did their job legally, politely, and professionally. The officers are now being publicly attacked and unjustly labeled (RACISTS). The Police officers should sue STARBUCKS and the Melissa DePino for publicly humiliating and attacking the credibility and character of the officers based upon their (RACE). I recommend a thoruogh investigation to see if there are any relationships or connections between Melissa DePino, the Starbucks employees, the two men described as black, and the friend who showed up later on.

It has the appearance of being a staged incident. Create the situation, call the police, video tape it, and file a law suit.

A SCENARIO worth INVESTIGAING/EVALUATING.

Exploit the communications, phone numbers, email addresses, screen names, etc. could either confirm a prior connection or negate the possibility of a staged incident.

Regardless whether staged or not, the police officers should sue STARBUCKS, and others for creating a situation whereas the police officers characters were publicly assassinated and they were labeled as "RACISTS". Being falsely accused and/or maliciously labeled a "Racist" is unfair and can destroy a person's career and public perception of their character and affect their jobs and credibility in the work place, court, etc.

STARBUCKS and the News Media should publicly admonish and such false or malicisous accusation or inferring the officers behaved in a RACIST manner and compensate the officers for the damage it has caused them.

An injustice here, is an injustice everywhere.

cybilinside
cybilinside

It has nothing to do with being black because the rule applies to everyone, as the story you clearly haven't read states. All Starbucks and many other businesses have the rule that you must be a paying customer to sit in the establishment or use the restroom. All these men had to do was say they were waiting for a friend so they could order together. Instead they decided to be obnoxious and belligerent,noy only with the store staff but with the police as well. Frankly, this reeks of another blm victim ploy. They deserve what they got.

BLSupporter
BLSupporter

(Sigh!) Why does this remind me of the gay couples who deliberately seek out Christian bakeries, knowing full well that their request for a wedding cake will not be honored? The Starbucks incident smacks of a set-up, designed to publicly embarrass a business and the police in one fell swoop. And yes, in case you were wondering, I am a person of color. The manager MAY have been a little zealous in enforcing policy, but that doesn't excuse the two men from refusing to leave when told to do so. The management is only required to tell them once; after that, they can call the police. Shame on Starbucks for allowing the police to receive the brunt of the public outrage. Even more so, shame on Melissa DePino for amplifying the situation. Telling only half the truth is no different than uttering a whole lie.