It looks like police dashcam video busted a university dean for lying about racial profiling.
Dorothy Bland, Dean of the University of North Texas’ School of Journalism, made local waves after writing a newspaper column about her so-called crime of “walking while black.”
Four days after her encounter Bland wrote in the Dallas Morning Star:
“I was dressed in a gray hooded “Boston” sweatshirt, black leggings, white socks, plus black-and-white Nike running shoes. Like most African-Americans, I am familiar with the phrase ‘driving while black,’ but was I really being stopped for walking on the street in my own neighborhood?
“Yes. In the words of Sal Ruibal, ‘Walking while black is a crime in many jurisdictions. May God have mercy on our nation’.”
Bland wrote that due to her small frame, she didn’t want to end up like Trayvon Martin, so she complied with officers.
“I stopped and asked the two officers if there was a problem; I don’t remember getting a decent answer before one of the officers asked me where I lived and for identification.
“I guess I was simply a brown face in an affluent neighborhood. I told the police I didn’t like to walk in the rain, and one of them told me, ‘My dog doesn’t like to walk in the rain.’ Ouch!”
In reality, the biggest “ouch” came 24-hours after Bland’s article was published. The police released video showing a very different story.
Police Chief Debra Walthall said she’s proud of the way the officers handled the situation.
“When I saw the video, those officers were nothing but professional,” Walthall said, according to the Daily Mail. “[The incident] just didn’t lend itself to racial profiling.
The video reveals the officers having a discussion with Bland, and even seemed concerned for her safety. Upon advising Bland to move to the side the street an officer can be heard saying, “We don’t want you to get hit.”
Walthall says she’s grateful for the video. “If we didn’t have the video, these officers would have serious allegations against them. It would be their word against hers.”
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