Watch: Man Arrested for Eating on Platform, People Dub the Move 'Racially' Motivated
The cop is seen holding the bag of Foster and is heard saying, "You are eating. It is against the law."
Video grab. (Facebook)
A video of a black man eating a sandwich on a train platform in California being arrested and fined has been sparking outrage on social media. In the viral video posted on Facebook, Steve Foster initially is seen confronting the police and saying that "he did nothing wrong".
The video shows that the officer with the name tag that read D McCormick, telling Foster he has been detained for eating in Bay Area Rapid Transit (BART) station. The cop is seen holding the bag of Foster and is heard saying, "You are eating. It is against the law."
In the video, apparently shot by Foster's friend, he is heard asking the cop to let go of his bag.
Both Foster and the friend are seen arguing with the cop holding the bag tightly not letting Foster go. Two trains are seen stopping at the platform and leaving. Passengers waiting at the platform are seen trying to understand the reason why Foster has been detained.
Foster's friend is also heard asking the cop about the sign that mentions that eating is not allowed at the platform.
The video then shows three more police personnel arriving at the sight. One of the cops then handcuffed Foster and walked him to the other end of the platform.
As soon as the video of Foster's confrontation with the cop went viral and people started questioning the nature of the arrest.
Many users believed that the entire incident was "racially" motivated.
According to a report by ABC7 News, BART riders protested the incident and congregated for lunch and ate at BART station.
A report by KRON mentioned BART spokesperson saying, "No matter how you feel about eating on BART, the officer saw someone eating and asked him to stop, when he didn’t, he was given a citation.”
She further said that Foster was "not cooperative" and was "not providing his identification" which is required for a citation.
A report by NBC quoted BART statement where it said that Foster was detained for eating which is a "violation of state law." It further said, "It isn’t just a policy or ordinance, it is penal code."
Following protests and backlash, BART General Manager Bob Powers issued an apology, saying “I’m disappointed how the situation unfolded. I apologise to Mr. Foster, our riders, employees, and the public who have had an emotional reaction to the video.”
Powers also said that eating in the paid area is not allowed and multiple signs have been put up inside every station about the same.
ABC7 News quoted Foster saying that he does not intend to sue the cops. He said, "I hope they start focusing on stuff that actually matters like people shooting up dope, hopping the BART, people getting stabbed."
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