Published on May 07, 2018
During our time in Cali we have been staying at an Airbnb. The 30th was our second morning and at about 11 am we checked out. The four of us packed our bags, locked up the house and left. As you can see 3 of us were Black. About 10 seconds later we were surrounded by 7 cop cars. The officers came out of their cars demanding us to put our hands in the air. They informed us that there was also a helicopter tracking us. They locked down the neighborhood and had us standing in the street. Why? A neighbor across the street saw 3 black people packing luggage into their car and assumed we were stealing from the house. She then called the police.At first, we joked about the misunderstanding and took photos and videos along the way.About 20 minutes into this misunderstanding it escalated almost instantly. Their Sergeant arrived... he explained they didn’t know what Airbnb was. He insisted that we were lying about it and said we had to prove it. We showed them the booking confirmations and phoned the landlord... because they didn’t know what she looked like on the other end to confirm it was her.. they detained us - because they were investigating a felony charge - for 45 minutes while they figured it out.We have been dealing with different emotions and you want to laugh about this but it’s not funny. The trauma is real. I've been angry, frustrated and sad. I was later detained at the airport. This is insanity. The cops admit that the woman’s reason for calling the police was because we didn’t WAVE to her as she looked at us putting our luggage into our car from her lawn.