The Latest: Mayor says Starbucks ‘contrite’ over arrests
PHILADELPHIA (AP) — The Latest on the arrests of two black men at a Philadelphia Starbucks (all times local):
Philadelphia officials have wrapped up a meeting with Starbucks executives to discuss the arrests of two black men who were denied use of a store’s bathroom and refused to leave.
Mayor Jim Kenney says he was pleased Starbucks executives traveled to his city on Monday to talk about what happened and “were very contrite.” The Democratic mayor says they are going to make sure “this doesn’t happen again.”
Starbucks has said it wants to add training for store managers on “unconscious bias.”
The two arrested men later were released without charges. Their arrests have drawn condemnation including by Starbucks CEO Kevin Johnson.
Police were called to the store after the men were denied use of the bathroom because they hadn’t bought anything and refused to leave.
Johnson says he appreciates “the transparency and the spirit with which” Starbucks and the city are “working together.”
The lawyer for the two black men arrested at a Philadelphia Starbucks store and later released without charges says he hopes “something productive for the community” can come out of their meeting with the company.
Attorney Stewart Cohen at first indicated the meeting would take place Monday but later said he was not saying when it would occur.
Cohen declined to identify the two men. A different attorney who had earlier represented them had described them as professionals in commercial real estate.
Starbucks CEO Kevin Johnson is in Philadelphia and has said he would like to meet with the men and city officials. Johnson has called the arrests “reprehensible.”
Police summoned to the store Thursday were told the men had asked to use the store’s restroom but were denied because they hadn’t bought anything, and they refused to leave.
Starbucks CEO Kevin Johnson says the company is reviewing the arrest of two black men in a Philadelphia store last week and expects to train store managers on “unconscious bias.”
“We’re looking at all aspects to ensure that this never happens again,” Johnson said Monday.
Asked if the incident was a case of racism, he responded: “Starbucks was built around the concept of a third place where we create a warm and welcoming environment for all customers. What I do know is that did not happen in this instance. And that is what we’re focused on.”
Johnson said he hopes to meet the two men in the next couple of days. He says he’s like to have a dialogue with them and listen with “compassion and empathy” about what they went through.
The CEO of Starbucks is in Philadelphia, hoping to meet with the two black men were arrested after employees of one of his stores called 911 to say the men were trespassing.
Kevin Johnson tells ABC’s “Good Morning America” on Monday he will meet with the mayor, police and hopefully the men who were arrested Thursday and later released. A call seeking comment from the men’s lawyer wasn’t immediately returned Monday.
Johnson’s comments came as about two dozen protesters took over the Starbucks location where the arrests happened.
The demonstrators stood by the counter chanting slogans like “Starbucks coffee is anti-black.”
Officials have said police officers were told the men had asked to use the store’s restroom but were denied because they hadn’t bought anything, and they refused to leave.
About two dozen chanting protesters have entered a Philadelphia Starbucks where two black men were arrested after store employees called 911 to say they were trespassing.
The protesters moved to the front counter shortly after 7 a.m. Monday and chanted “Starbucks coffee is anti-black.”
Over the weekend, demonstrators called for the firing of the employee who contacted police, who arrested the men on Thursday.
Officials have said police officers were told the men had asked to use the store’s restroom but were denied because they hadn’t bought anything and they refused to leave.
Police haven’t released the names of the men who were arrested and later released after the district attorney’s office said there was lack of evidence that a crime had been committed.
Starbucks CEO Kevin Johnson has called the arrests a “reprehensible outcome.”
Protests are planned at a Philadelphia Starbucks where two black men were arrested after store employees called 911 to say they were trespassing.
Organizers have called for protests to begin at 7 a.m. Monday outside the downtown Starbucks. Over the weekend, protesters called for the firing of the employee who contacted police, who arrested the men on Thursday.
Police Commissioner Richard Ross has said officers were told the men had asked to use the store’s restroom but were denied because they hadn’t bought anything. He said they then refused to leave.
Police haven’t released the names of the men who were arrested. A spokesman for the district attorney’s office said the two were released “because of lack of evidence” that a crime had been committed.
Starbucks CEO Kevin Johnson has called the arrests a “reprehensible outcome” and said he wants to personally apologize to the men.
Copyright © The Associated Press. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.