A black couple were recently refused service and asked to leave while attempting to dine at a Houston restaurant in Memphis, Tennessee. The couple feel they have been racially profiled after the manager claimed they smelled like marijuana.
Marcus Mosby has been a police officer for nearly 28 years and his wife is a high school principal. Earlier this week, he spoke to local news station FOX 13 and said the incident happened on Poplar Avenue on Saturday night (August 20). Mosby says the manager approached his family, stating, “There’s a strong smell of marijuana coming from your party in that area.” He says he informed the woman about his and his wife’s occupations and assured her that they had nothing to do with drug use. The policeman added that the restaurant manager did not want to hear his version.
“I said, ‘Ma’am, we don’t smoke marijuana. You’re wrong,” Mosby told a reporter during an on-camera interview with the outlet. He says the woman replied, “I have received complaints. People called and said they smelled bad [marijuana].” He insisted that no other customers or employees had been near them recently except for her. Mosby told the news station that he and his family refused to leave the restaurant and asked another employee to intervene.
The family was eventually seated and Mosby says the manager apologized after no other staff seemed to detect the presence of marijuana. He asked her, “Why did you just racially profile us?” Mosby claims the woman claimed it was “just a big mistake.” The outlet contacted the company for a statement regarding the incident.
Ralph Price, Houston’s general manager, offered an answer: “Mr. Mosby had dinner with us on Saturday with his family. When we detect the strong presence of marijuana in arriving customers, we refuse service because the smell may affect other meals. Price added: ‘We erred in attributing the smell to Mr Mosby’s party and apologized. We were happy to welcome him and take care of his experience on Saturday. Mosby told the news station: ‘She singled us out. I feel like we’ve been racially profiled. He noted that he “didn’t plan to patronize [the] establishment more.