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Cops called after Nordstrom rack employees falsely accuse 3 black teens of theft

Posted at 1:54 PM, May 08, 2018
and last updated 2018-05-08 13:54:12-04

MISSOURI (KMOVCNN) - A case of alleged racial profiling in Missouri is making national headlines after three black teenagers shopping at a Nordstrom rack clothing store on Thursday, say they were followed around the business and wrongly accused of stealing.

Mekhi Lee, Dirone Taylor and Eric Rogers II say they noticed employees following them around the store while they shopped.

"Every time we move, they move. When we looked up, they looked up," said Mekhi Lee.

When the three left the store Brentwood Police surrounded them in the parking lot saying the store accused them of theft.

After an on the spot investigation, police let the three go with no charges.

“The police we're actually good. They understood where we were coming from and they showed us that they were just doing their job," said Eric rogers II.

In addition to the theft accusations, the teens said a customer in the store called them punks and allegedly said ‘are your parents proud of you for what you do?’

"I knew it was coming but at the same time I was feeling embarrassed, agitated, mixed emotions with the whole situation because I knew that we didn't deserve it,” said Dirone Taylor.

While the teens were in the store, they say they made a purchase to prove a point.

"We made the purchase to show them that we're equal and we didn't have to steal anything, “said Eric Rogers II.

The St. Louis NAACP says they are getting involved and wants to work with the clothing store.

"The discussion has to have some substance, it needs to be strategic, and it needs to have some measurable outcomes," said NAACP president, Adolphus Pruitt.

The company's president flew into town to meet with the three teens, and he remained in town to go over policies and training practices with workers.

Nordstrom says the employees involved in the incident were responding to a verbal altercation inside the store.

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