A Black shopper is speaking out after being wrongly accused of taking a woman’s phone that was actually in her purse all along.
Kinley and his partner, whose name on TikTok is T, were shopping at a gift store in Palm Desert, California, when they noticed a woman was looking at them suspiciously.
“She just turned the corner and walked right up to him, and I was like, I need to pull out my camera right now, ‘cause I know this is about to get stupid really fast,” T told Inside Edition.
That’s when the woman said, “I just stuck [the phone] right here and you walked up behind me and you swiped it.”
Kinley told the woman he didn’t take it and even emptied everything in his pockets to show her.
“I didn’t want the situation to go any further than it already had,” he said. “Because if I had not emptied my pockets or if I had walked off and ignored her, she probably would have called the cops.”
The clerk tried to keep things calm, then he offered to dial the woman’s phone number. But the so-called “Karen” suggested Kinley may have silenced the phone.
Then, the woman found the phone in her purse, where it had been the whole time. She quickly apologized, telling the couple, “I just freaked out.”
The person who posted the TikTok of the incident says Kinley grew up and spent 28 years in the south and that he hadn’t been in California a month before the incident.