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Man Raises Issue Of Racial Profiling Amongst NYC Cabbies

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Jerrell Horton (Photo/CBS 2)

Jerrell Horton (Photo/CBS 2)

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NEW YORK (CBS 2) — A scraped knee and torn leather jacket are the worst reminders of Jerrell Horton’s run in with an out-of-control cabbie early Sunday morning.

As he was trying to get home to Brooklyn after a night out with friends at a Soho club, Horton said he was shunned by a cab driver, who dragged him nearly a block before he could free himself.

“I open the door he’s like ‘where are you going,’ I said ‘Brooklyn’…he takes off. The door slams, my jacket gets caught,” Horton told CBS 2’s Rob Morrison. 

It all happened so quickly that he was unable to get a license plate or medallion number.

“I lost my wallet, lost my prescription glasses. It’s just ridiculous,” Horton said.

The Rider Bill of Rights clearly states that cabs are required to take passengers to any destination they request in the city. Horton said it simply isn’t the case for many African Americans, who are routinely passed by altogether.

Horton said he walked 25 minutes before a cab would finally stop to pick him up. He said it was even worse earlier that evening, when he said he was forced to do something he called “embarrassing.”

“Finally I see two white guys on the corner and I say ‘do you guys mind hailing me a cab’ cause I’ve done this before — have a white guy hail me a cab,” Horton said.

Horton, who works on Wall Street, said he’s not interested in lawsuits or criminal charges. He said the issue of racial profiling often goes unmentioned in New York and wants the subject addressed seriously.

Morrison spoke with a few pedestrians Monday night to see if they’ve had a similar experience.

“Unless I’m with a group that’s not of my same complexion — then yeah,” one man said.

“I saw at least like ten other people pick up a cab before they would pick up me,” another woman said.

“Let’s say I wasn’t dragged, would you guys even be here? Probably not,” Horton said.


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