A recent visit to Starbucks changed the lives of Rashon Nelson and Donte Robinson in ways they never could have imagined. Following the release of a viral video showing them being arrested at a Starbucks while awaiting a friend, social media erupted, and protesters descended upon the Starbucks at which the arrest took place. Starbucks' CEO apologized to the men and announced a plan to implement an afternoon-long racial bias training session for all of his employees. 

Philadelphia Police Commissioner Richard Ross initially defended his officers and how they handled the incident. Ross claimed the officers “did absolutely nothing wrong,” and accused the two young men of being disrespectful to the officers.

However, this week, Ross walked back those statements and apologized to Robinson and Nelson. Ross — a black man — now says he "failed miserably" in addressing the arrest, and the racial element of the issue does not escape him.

Police Commissioner Ross said he was unaware that people sit in @Starbucks for hours “I apologize,” he said to men arrested. pic.twitter.com/8FoaJo58w8— Mensah M. Dean (@MensahDean) April 19, 2018

Until now, the two men had been relatively silent, but on Thursday they gave their first official interview to tell their sides of the story. 

“We do want to make sure it doesn’t happen to anybody again,” Robinson told the Associated Press. “What if it wasn’t us sitting there? What if it was the kid that didn’t know somebody that knew somebody? Do they make it to jail? Do they die? What happens?”

“You go from being someone who’s just trying to be an entrepreneur, having your own dreams and aspirations, and then this happens,” noted Nelson. “How do you handle it? Do you stand up? Do you fight? Do you sit down and just watch everyone else fight for you? Do you let it slide, like we let everything else slide with injustice?”

Robinson said he appreciates the support everyone has given them but noted that a Starbucks boycott may not be the best solution. The two men are currently in mediation with Starbucks to create long-lasting solutions such as a customer bill of rights for stores, new policies regarding customer ejections, racial profiling and discrimination training and a framework for independent investigations of any discrimination complaints.