Police called on paper boy; family blames racial profiling - KPLC 7 News, Lake Charles, Louisiana

Police called on paper boy; family blames racial profiling

A family says they were the subject of racial profiling after the police were called on them while they were delivering newspapers. (Source: WSYX via CNN) A family says they were the subject of racial profiling after the police were called on them while they were delivering newspapers. (Source: WSYX via CNN)

UPPER ARLINGTON, OH (WSYX/CNN) – A family believes they were the subjects of racial profiling while delivering newspapers.

The mother said she was trying to teach her sons the value of hard work when police showed up and asked what they were doing.

Brandi Sharp and her sons, 17-year-old Mycah and 11-year-old Uriah, were delivering newspapers to porches in an Upper Arlington, OH, neighborhood.

But when the family realized they'd delivered papers to some wrong houses, Uriah went back to grab them.

That's when an Upper Arlington Police officer showed up and asked what they were doing.

"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?'" Sharp said.

The officer was questioning sharp because someone had called the police on her family.

"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," said the caller to a 911 operator. "I mean, I don't want to say something was going on, but it just seemed kind of suspicious."

Sharp felt she had to share what happened in a social media post that's now being commented on and shared hundreds of times.

"At 5:30 in the evening, what was this big, you know, reasoning that you had to call the police?" Sharp said. "Something as simple as delivering papers, and it turns out to be I have to be racially profiled?"

Upper Arlington Police said they often respond to calls from people worried about what they consider suspicious behavior.

"We sent an officer out to take a look at it. When our officer arrived on scene, he very quickly determined that these individuals were delivering the newspaper," Officer Bryan McKean said. "I would say to anyone who feels like their interaction with us was not professional and not to the highest standard, to contact us directly.”

Uriah said he'll keep on helping his mom, but he's uncomfortable after the experience with police.

"I was happy because he waved, but I wasn't happy because somebody called the cops on us," Uriah said.

Sharp said she wishes the caller would have just asked what they were doing, instead of calling the police.

Copyright 2018 WSYX via CNN. All rights reserved.

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