Starbucks CEO Apologizes After 2 Black Men Were Arrested For Reportedly Not Ordering Anything In The Shop

It looks like it ain't safe to be in a coffee shop while black either.

Photo Credit: Photo: Twitter

| April 15 2018,

2:36 pm

A viral video showing two black men getting handcuffed and escorted out of a Starbucks by Philadelphia police officers for reportedly not buying anything has caused outrage online and the coffee brand took notice. 

Starbucks apologized for the arrest of the two real estate brokers via a statement released on Twitter Saturday morning. 

But, as many mentioned, the company did not admit to any wrongdoing despite Philadelphia police saying a Starbucks employee called the police on the men, claiming they were trespassing. 

However, this employee reportedly did not expect the police to arrest the pair. '
Starbucks CEO Kevin Johnson had much stronger words in a statement he released Saturday evening.  

"The video shot by customers is very hard to watch and the actions in it are not representative of our Starbucks Mission and Values," he said in the statement. "Regretfully, our practices and training led to a bad outcome — the basis for the call to the Philadelphia police department was wrong." 

Philadelphia Police Commissioner Richard Ross defended the arresting officers Saturday, saying they “did absolutely nothing wrong."

The two men went into the Philadelphia Starbucks asking to use the restroom but they were refused because they didn't purchase anything per the company's policy, according to Ross. When police arrived they asked the two men to leave three times but they declined, and as a result, they were arrested, Ross said. 

“As an African American male, I am very aware of implicit bias; we are committed to fair and unbiased policing,” Ross said. 

“If a business calls and they say that ‘Someone is here that I no longer wish to be in my business,’" Ross said. "[Officers] now have a legal obligation to carry out their duties and they did just that.” 

Twitter user @MissyDePino posted a short 45-second clip of the arrest on Twitter Thursday. 


A white patron questioned one of the officers about why the men, who were reportedly waiting for a friend, were being removed from the establishment. There was also a female customer speaking to police and proclaiming the unidentified men's innocence. 

Other patrons stared on as the group of officers took the compliant men away in handcuffs. 

Outrage and calls for a boycott gained steam online, forcing Starbucks to release a statement on Twitter Friday evening claiming they were working with law enforcement to review the arrest.  
''' Philadelphia Police released a statement on Twitter Friday evening saying that the incident is "under internal investigation."

Mayor Jim Kenney spoke out about the incident Saturday in a statement where he called for Philadelphia's Commission on Human Relations to look into the policies of Starbucks.

“I am heartbroken to see Philadelphia in the headlines for an incident that — at least based on what we know at this point," Kenney said, "appears to exemplify what racial discrimination looks like in 2018."