Men Arrested At Philadelphia Starbucks Speak Out; Police Commissioner Apologizes

Starbucks to close 8,000 US stores for racial-bias training

Ross said the issue of race isn't lost on him and that he shouldn't be making things worse.

She said this type of training is to help people recognize any biases they may carry from simply live experience. "Just double-locked handcuffs behind our back, escorted out and put into a squad vehicle".

"That's when we knew she called the police on us", Nelson told The Associated Press in the first interview by the two black men since video of their April 12 trespassing arrests touched off a furor around the USA over racial profiling or what has been dubbed "retail racism" or "shopping while black".

"We were there for a real reason, a real deal that we were working on", Robinson told the Associated Press.

In a video testimonial released Saturday, Ross also accused Nelson and Robinson of being disrespectful to the officers and said they were both given several chances to leave, but refused. "I'm trying to think of something I did wrong, to put not just me but my brother, my lifelong this situation". He was told it was only for paying customers.

It reportedly took just two minutes from their arrival to her call for help. "Anytime I'm encountered by cops, I can honestly say it's a thought that runs through my mind", he said.

"So you know, take this opportunity as a stepping stone to really stand up and show your greatness", Nelson added.

- A minority-owned coffee shop in Prince George's County is reporting a boost in sales following the Starbucks controversy in Philadelphia.

Robinson said he thought about his loved ones and how the afternoon had taken such a turn as he was taken to jail. Mr. Robinson and Mr. Nelson explained that Starbucks agreed to the proposal of entering mediation with a retired federal judge.

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Starbucks became a revolution not just for charging a premium price for coffee and giving an Italian name to its servers, but for blurring the lines between retail space and civic space.

The remainder of the recording features back-and-forth between the dispatcher and responding officers. Ross initially said "officers did absolutely nothing wrong", a comment that drew outrage from activists and stirred POWER to hold Thursday's march. "But what's right is right and what's wrong is wrong".

Starbucks founder Howard Schwartz, CEO Kevin Johnson and COO Rosalind Brewer came to Philadelphia on Monday to meet with city officials, community activists and journalists to talk about the situation and ways to defuse the tensions that had led to sit-ins and other protests since the tape of Nelson and Robinson's arrest surfaced late last Thursday.

Philadelphia Police Commissioner Richard Ross apologized over the wording he used in a previous statement.

Ross told a news conference he had been unaware that Starbucks' policy was to allow people to remain in its cafes without making a purchase.

That said Ross knows he's got a pretty sizable fix job on his hands. The company has refused to name the employee who called the police but says that the employee is no longer employed by Starbucks.

But for its part, Starbucks has been focusing its messaging on racial bias rather than on store policy.

Starbucks is closing its company-owned stores for one day to give employees unconscious bias training. Still, Ross wondered why the Starbucks manager would call police if the company is known for letting people hang out in their stores.

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