Police Cuff Black Teen for Buying Pricey Belt

Trayon Christian suing NYPD, Barneys

By Kevin Spak,  Newser Staff

Posted Oct 23, 2013 9:48 AM CDT

(Newser) – A New York City teen says police cuffed him and hauled him down to the station for questioning because a department store clerk assumed that a young black man could not possibly afford the expensive belt he'd just bought. Trayon Christian, 19, has filed a lawsuit against both Barneys and the NYPD over the incident, the New York Post reports. The NYC College of Technology freshman says he used money saved up from his part-time job to buy a $350 designer belt from Barneys in April.

Soon after he left the store, he was stopped by plainclothes detectives. The clerk had called to report the sale as a fraud. At the local precinct, Christian showed police his receipt, the debit card he'd used, and an ID proving the card was his, but he "was told that his identification was false and that he could not afford to make such an expensive purchase." Eventually, after a call to his bank, which confirmed the card was indeed his, police let Christian go. He has since returned the Salvatore Ferragamo belt. "I didn't want anything to do with it," he says.

  (Shutterstock)
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