A mom in Ohio is left saddened after someone called police on her 12-year-old son—for delivering newspapers.
Brandie Sharp was out with her two sons, 17-year-old Mycha and 12-year-old Uriah, who was just starting his first day delivering newspaper circulars to the porches of neighbors on Barrington Road, in Upper Arlington, Ohio. That’s when Sharp alleges police stopped them for a chat about what they were doing in the neighborhood.
She posted about the incident on Facebook:
According to an interview with ABC6/FOX28, Sharp said:
I showed him the thing for the Dispatch, The Bag, the midday week paper, that we get and he said ‘Oh, really?’ and by that time I was kind of like, ‘Okay, why are you questioning me about this?’
What she found out was that someone in the neighborhood had called the police on the young boy. A recorded phone call to Upper Arlington police was reported by the outlet as saying:
It looked like at first they were delivering newspapers or something, but I noticed they were walking up to the houses with nothing in hand and one of them came back with something. I mean, I don’t want to say something was going on, but it just but it just seemed kind of suspicious.
Uriah and his mother admit they were going back up to porches and removing newspapers that he had earlier erroneously delivered to the wrong addresses, an easy mistake on his first day on a job ever. Being conscientious, Uriah was now returning to the houses to collect the errant newspapers and deliver them to the correct residents.
Sharp told channel 6:
What was suspicious at 5:30 in the evening? What was this big, you know, reasoning that you had to call the police?
The incident, another in a long line of recent events in which white people appear to be calling police on people of color for simply going about their daily lives, has now gone viral with over 1400 comments and 2000 shares on Sharp’s post.
People on Facebook were brokenhearted for the family:
Sharp, who in her post said she was “totally disgusted and disturbed,” by the events that took place, still felt the need to apologize, saying:
My apologies Upper Arlington for bringing my 12 year old African American son into your neighbourhood to deliver the paper and make a few dollars on the side… NO HARM INTENDED. I will make sure my boss changes his route.
Many were mad that Sharp felt SHE had to apologize:
Upper Arlington Police Officer Bryan McKean, who responded to the call, said police quickly assessed that there was nothing suspicious going on.
We sent an officer out to take a look at it. When our officer arrived on scene, he very quickly determined very quickly that these individuals were delivering the newspaper.
He also noted:
…anyone who feels like their interaction with us was not professional and not to the highest standard, to contact us directly.
Stephanie summed it up best: