Man Arrested 62 Times for Trespassing— at Own Job

Miami-area cops constantly hassling black workers, customers: store owner

By Matt Cantor,  Newser User | Suggested by Ghille

Posted Nov 23, 2013 2:50 PM CST
Share on Facebook Share on Twitter Share via Email

(Newser) – Over a four-year period, a Florida man has been stopped by Miami Gardens police 258 times, searched 100 times, and jailed 56 times, even though his most serious conviction is for having marijuana. Earl Sampson has been arrested 62 times for trespassing, nearly always at the 207 Quickstop convenience store—where he works. And he's not the only one: His fellow employees and customers at the shop are regularly stopped by police, to the consternation of owner Alex Saleh, who had security cameras installed for protection... against the cops, the Miami Herald reports.

Most of the people who work in or shop at the store, including Sampson, are low-income African-Americans. About three years ago, Saleh agreed to participate in a "zero-tolerance" program, in which police try to eliminate small crimes to expose more serious criminals. That's when police started hassling customers and arresting workers during shifts, he says. The videos reveal startling police behavior: In one, they arrest Sampson while he's stocking coolers; in that instance, he went to prison for trespassing, with an arrest report saying he was he was loitering outside. "Nobody can justify overstepping the constitution to fight crime," says a former cop. Click for the Herald's full investigation.

A Florida clerk has been arrested 62 times for trespassing at his own workplace.
A Florida clerk has been arrested 62 times for trespassing at his own workplace.   (Shutterstock)
« Prev« Prev | Next »Next » Slideshow
To report an error on this story, notify our editors.