A video of a Walgreens security guard racially profiling a loyal black customer and calling the police on him because he looked "suspicious" is being widely circulated on social media.
Instagram user and rapper Vinnie Dewayne shared video footage of the encounter along with a caption that read, "WALGREENS CALLED THE POLICE ON ME WITHIN 8 MINUTES OF BEING IN THEIR STORE."
Dewayne noted that he was looking to purchase cat food among other things at his local Walgreens when he was approached by a police officer and asked to leave the store, adding that he's a Walgreens Rewards member.
"This is pure racism, harassment and embarrassing in my local @walgreens," he wrote. "They didn't ask if I needed help finding anything, the COP just approached me and told me to leave.... and that's where I started recording."
'You Were Just Walking Around'
The video starts off with Dewayne asking the police officer to explain why he is being asked to leave the store. The officer responds by saying that the store's security guard reported him and wanted him out of the store but did not know why.
The pair then walk over to the security guard. "You were just walking around, I don't know what you were looking for," the employee tells Dewayne.
"Is there a problem with me walking around?," the rapper asks.
"Yeah, if you look suspicious, yeah," the security guard replies.
'I Come In Here Every Night'
Dewayne then explains to the staff member that not only does he live right down the street, but he also visits the store daily. He then asks another employee to verify the same by asking him if he recognizes him and the staffer responds affirmatively.
"I come in here every night and you're saying I look suspicious?," Dewayne says. "And you're telling this cop here, I'm pretty sure there's a lot of things he could be doing right now but you got him specifically asking me, and you're telling him I'm suspicious."
Dewayne then asks the security guard to explain why he looked "suspicious."
'You're Not Buying Anything'
"You're just walking around and not buying anything," the employee can be heard saying.
"Like a normal person," the rapper snaps back.
"At this hour?" the guard asks.
"So what?! This is a store," Dewayne retorts. "There's a lot of people walking around. Am I the only one that looks suspicious?"
"No," the employee responds. Dewayne then asks the officer if the security guard reported anybody else inside the store.
"Nobody," the officer answered.
Towards the end of the clip, the officer offers some feedback to the guard on Dewayne's insistence. "I'd maybe talk to the person before [reporting] and find out what's going on."
"Maybe before telling a cop that I should be kicked out, maybe you should ask me if I need help," Dewayne says to the guard before the video concludes. Watch the full clip below:
Walgreens Investigating the Incident
Shortly after the video went viral on social media, several users brought the incident to Walgreen's attention, with some calling for a boycott of the pharmacy store chain while others urged the company to fire the security guard.
Walgreen's social media team then issued a statement on Twitter saying it was investigating the incident. "Thanks for bringing this to our attention. We've escalated this up to management who will be taking a look into this matter," the statement read.