Organizers in Northern California held a sit-in at Sausalito beach on Sunday, Oct. 18, after a Black man was asked by a property owner to leave a public access area of a Bay Area beach.
Video footage of the Oct. 8 incident posted to social media shows property owner Mohamed Karah asking Marcus Hall to leave Swede’s Beach.
Hall, who said he visits the beach on his lunch break to relax, was sitting on a fence after work when he encountered Karah.
“The people here and the police, they don’t want you here because this is not public. It’s private,” Karah said. “People don’t want you here, you understand?”
When Hall told Karah he lived and worked by the beach, Karah responded: “You don’t live here, you don’t work here. “
“Yes, I do,” Hall said.
“Go and work then!” Karah said later. “Instead of sitting here all day, you are not working.”
“I am working, you can’t tell me what I’m doing,” Hall said.
“People don’t want you here, you understand?!” Karah yelled.
“I do not care,” Hall responded. “Call your cops. Do what you gotta do.”
“I’m going to call 911,” Karah said.
“Please do,” said Hall.
He told The Marine Independent Journal he felt like he was being “racially profiled to the fullest.”
Karah, who is of Libyan descent, said his actions were not about race. According to Karah, he noticed Hall lying near his fence, and Hall gave him the middle finger when he was asked to leave.
Karah, who said he is an 86-year-old who lives alone and has an injured leg, also said he began talking louder so that other people would hear and come help. He said another woman thought Hall was homeless and sprayed water at him to get him to leave.
Hall said he is not homeless and recalled being sprayed with a hose on two separate occasions. He said the neighbors told him it was an accident, and that after he left a note saying the hose was getting him wet, they accused him of being on their property. He also denied insulting Karah.
Hall filed a police report, but Sausalito police Capt. Bill Fraass said there is no evidence that any laws were broken after speaking with Karah and gathering other evidence. Chief John Rohrbacher confirmed that Hall was at the beach lawfully.
At Sunday’s sit-in, a protest against racial profiling, Hall spoke to about 50 demonstrators about his experience.
“As a Black man, and brown people deal with this too, I experience some sort of version of this almost every day. Unfortunately a lot of us are desensitized to it, unbothered. It’s not surprising because it’s not new, and I think that’s the saddest part,” he told the Marin Independent Journal.