White Man Who Called Police on Black Pool Patrons Blames Disability, Gets Evicted
|thenorthstar||Jul 1, 2019|
A white man who called the police on two different groups of Black women at a Maryland apartment complex is being evicted.A woman, who WUSA9 identified as Felecia Soso, posted a Twitter thread on June 22 stating that, as she and a few of her friends sat by the pool listening to music and having drinks at the Edition Apartments in Hyattsville, a white man started yelling at one of her friends.
In the first video posted by Soso on Twitter, a Black woman in a yellow bathing suit can be seen talking to a white man who has his phone in her face. The woman calmly speaks to the man, who says that “glassware is not allowed at the pool.” The woman then asks what she can do to make him more comfortable. He responds that he will report her to the apartment complex’s leasing department.
Soso wrote in the Twitter thread that the people in the leasing department seemed “very annoyed” with the man and spoke with him. The man reportedly came back to the pool area to call the police on the women. A second video in the Twitter thread shows the man on his cellphone across the pool from where the women sat. “You guys... I’ve honestly seen SO MANY TYPES of racism... mostly passive... some not so much.. but usually I can see why like you feel threatened by us being loud so you react like this... we having [too] much fun so you’re mad... but we weren’t doing ANYTHING BUT EXISTING,” Soso wrote.
Another incident with the same man occurred on June 23 with another group of Black women. Gaëlle Claude posted a video on Twitter that showed the man, who has been identified as Nick Starr-Street, following her and a friend while he was on the phone with authorities.
"This white man literally stalked us from his apartment for damn near a mile just cause we were at the pool drinking wine and taking pictures. Called the police and all… I cannot make this up," Claude wrote.
Starr-Street also posted a video on YouTube of one of the women slapping his phone out of his hand while he harassed them. The Hyattsville Police Department confirmed both incidents in a Facebook statement on June 24.
In an interview with WUSA9, Starr-Street told the news station that both of the phone calls he made to the police did not relate to race. He explained that he has autism and had called security on a group of white women at the apartment complex’s pool on June 24, but admitted that he did not record them or call the police."I'm autistic. I just see right and wrong," Starr-Street told the news station. "I don't see race. I don't see gender. I don’t see color. I don't see any of that." "I think because of the way that my mind works, I don't always click with other people," he continued. "I don't understand when people get upset over the things that I say or do. To me, that’s just how I feel."
The Edition Hyattsville posted a statement to Facebook on June 27, stating that Starr-Street is being evicted.“After an exhaustive look at the various options, we can now officially announce that the residents in question will no longer be members of The Edition’s community as of Monday, July 1, 2019. The Edition was not complicit in these events, and it was imperative to us that immediate action was taken to maintain the safety and well-being of our residents and guests, which continues to be our main priority,” the apartment complex announced.
This is not the first time a white individual has called the police on Black people at a pool. In July 2018, a man in North Carolina lost his job after he called the Winston-Salem police on a Black mother and her daughter for using a private community pool, NBC News previously reported.
In a video that went viral, Jazmine Abhulimen, a Black woman who lives in the Glenridge community in Winston-Salem, North Carolina, claimed that former pool chairman Adam Bloom requested her address and identification to prove that she lived in the community and had a key to the pool. Bloom apologized following the incident and has stepped down as pool chair and as a board member of the homeowners association in Glenridge, according to NBC News.
About the Author
Maria Perez is a breaking news writer for The North Star. She has an M.A. in Urban Reporting from the CUNY Graduate School of Journalism. She has been published in the various venues, including Newsweek, Juvenile Justice Information Exchange, City Limits, and local newspapers like The Wave and The Home Reporter.