Royal Oak police apologize to black man stopped for allegedly looking at white woman suspiciously

Video of exchange sparked outrage

By Koco McAboy - Reporter, Amber Ainsworth

ROYAL OAK, Mich. - Royal Oak police apologized Thursday after a viral video of an officer approaching a black man for allegedly looking at a white woman suspiciously caused outrage.

"He's an African American male, and I don't know what his deal is, but it's making me not feel very comfortable," the woman said in a 911 call.

Police stopped Devin Myers, 20, as he was walking into Inn Season Cafe.

"She's calling us saying you're staring at her, so that's why I'm out here," an officer said to Myers.

The officer and Myers went back and forth, and Myers asked for a supervisor.

The Police Department issued an apology for what happened, saying: "This is not the practice of the Royal Oak Police Department and it is not acceptable. The supervisor has been disciplined and every Royal Oak police supervisor has received additional training in procedural justice."

Restaurant manager speaks out

The manager of the Inn Season Cafe, who is seen advocating for Myers in the video, spoke to Local 4. She didn't want her face on camera, but she explained why she felt compelled to help.

"My coworkers saw the police come up on the curb and it was right in front of the restaurant and I just immediately went outside. It was just like a gut instinct," the manager said.

She said she felt like she needed to be there for Myers because she has a son around his age.

"No matter who this person was, I wanted to be there as a witness and be present," she said.

Myers expressed his gratitude toward the manager.

"I love you, thank you. I will always come to your restaurant," he said.

She said the feeling is mutual.

"I love him, too. I'm so thankful that I was here and that I could be there for him," she said.

She said the restaurant has been flooded with calls since the incident.

"Feeling this response has been absolutely amazing, just knowing how many how many people there are in the world that are filled with love and respect for each other. We're all connected. We're all one," the manager said.

The woman who made the 911 call never got out of her vehicle to approach Myers or the officers during the encounter.

"I just wish she would have gotten out of her car and come over here and maybe not been a coward sitting in her car watching the whole time," the manager said.

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