I’m pretty sure Forest Whitaker had no idea his trip to a NYC deli would turn into a disaster. According to his publicist, Jennifer Plante, Whitaker was falsely accused of shoplifting and then frisked at the Milano Market on the Upper West Side of Manhattan. The unnamed employee wouldn’t allow Whitaker to leave the store and frisked him in front of the other customers.
“This was an upsetting incident given the fact that Forest did nothing more than walk into a deli,” Plante said in a statement to The New York Daily News. “What is most unfortunate about this situation is the inappropriate way store employees are treating patrons of their establishment. Frisking individuals without proof/evidence is a violation of rights.”
I suppose stop and frisk is more than a NYPD thing.
Another employee of the deli confirmed the incident. “It was around lunchtime and the store was packed,” said a Milano employee who refused to give his name. “We were like 50 people deep. The person walked in and out really quickly so our person just made a mistake. The employee apologized immediately. It was an honest mistake. I’ve been here 14 years and nothing like this has ever happened.”
Although the employee later apologized, Plante stated that Whitaker was still upset about the incident. “This was an upsetting incident given the fact that Forest did nothing more than walk into the deli”. As upsetting as Whitaker was, he didn’t file a complaint with the NYPD because he feared the employee would lose his job. “Forest asked that, in the future, the store change their behavior and treat the public in a fair and just manner,” added his publicist.
Whitaker is currently in New York City filming the movie Black Nativity, with Angela Bassett.
If you were in Whitaker’s shoes, what would you have done?