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The Plot Thickens: Race Wasn’t Mentioned in Gates 911 Call

CAMBRIDGE, Mass. (July 27) – A woman who called 911 to report a possible break-in at the home of black Harvard scholar Henry Louis Gates Jr. makes no mention of race.

Cambridge police released a recording of the call Monday after more than a week of controversy over Gates’ arrest on a disorderly conduct charge on July 16.

The caller, Lucia Whalen, says she saw two men pushing on the door of the house. The caller in fact was not even sure there was a break-in for she tells police she is not sure if the men live there or not. When pressed for a description by a dispatcher, she says one of the men may have been Hispanic.

“This woman is not a racist and was acting as a responsible citizen, with appropriate concern for the safety of the community,” her lawyer, Wendy J. Murphy, said in a statement that didn’t identify the woman. “She has worked in Cambridge for more than 15 years, about 100 yards from where Mr. Gates resides, and was aware of several recent break-ins in the area.”

You ca listen to the call yourself by clicking the above photo of Gates in handcuffs.

An initial police report on the matter had said the caller saw “two black men.”

Gates called his arrest by Sgt. James Crowley an act of racial profiling. Crowley’s supporters say Gates was belligerent.

The disorderly conduct charge was dropped, but interest in the case intensified with President Barack Obama said at a White House news conference that Cambridge police “acted stupidly” in arresting Gates.

Obama later sought to tamp down the uproar. He spoke to Crowley and Gates during separate telephone calls Friday and declared that Crowley was a good man.

The president invited the officer and the professor to the White House for a beer. He conceded his words had been ill-chosen, but he stopped short of a public apology.

Gates said he hoped his arrest would lead to a greater understanding about racial profiling in America.

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    Posted in Civl Rights and Justice and Legal 5 years, 2 months ago at 10:40 am.

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