A Chicago Black man recently recorded his encounter with a Walgreens employee who called the police to have him removed from the store because he looked suspicious.
Vinnie Dewayne shared the video to Instagram this week, and the footage has been viewed more than 70,000 times. Dewayne said he had just gotten off work and was visiting a store he frequents near his home when the incident occurred.
The footage shows Dewayne’s interaction with a police officer who asked him to leave and with the Walgreens employee who allegedly asked to officer to confront him. He said he was confronted by the officer within eight minutes of entering the store.
“Can you explain one more time why you’re telling me to leave?” Dewayne asked the officer after beginning to record the interaction on his phone.
“So the security guard said he — I don’t know why he does not want you here. We can go talk to him,” the officer responded.
The two headed over to the guard.
“You were just walking around, I don’t know what you’re looking for,” the guard told Dewayne.
“What do you mean what am I looking for? I’m clearly looking for something,” Dewayne said. “Is there a problem with me walking around?”
“Yeah, if you look suspicious, yeah,” the guard said.
“What about me looks suspicious? Dewayne asked. He went on to explain that he was at the Walgreens to buy cat food, a lint roller and soup, and that he was preparing for a flight the next day.
“I come here every day, I live right down the street,” Dewayne said, before offering to show the guard his address.
“I’m pretty sure there’s a lot of things he could be doing right now … but you’re telling him I’m suspicious,” Dewyane said to the employee in reference to the police officer. “You look suspicious watching me as I’m trying to shop.”
When the guard said he was just doing his job, Dewayne replied, “You’re not doing a good job at it.”
As Dewayne continued to confront the employee and turned his attention the offcer, the cop said, “He told me you had to leave.”
“What are you going to do, are you going to let him keep shopping?” the officer asked the emplpoyees.
“Yeah, he’s fine,” the employee said.
Dewayne then asked the officer to provide feedback to the employee that would help him “do his job better. “
“Maybe talk to the person before you … maybe find out what’s going on,” the officer said.
Walgreens issued a statement on social media, saying the incident was under investigation. “Thanks for bringing this to our attention. We’ve escalated this up to management who will be taking a look into this matter,” the statement read.
On social media, some people called for a boycott of the chain. “This is RACISM Your employee is RACIST & prejudiced Fortunately, we can take our business elsewhere,” one Twitter user wrote.