A black 17-year-old reported his stolen car using LoJack...and police reportedly arrested him instead

Racial relations between the police and black citizens is a huge topic of conversation in America right now.

Athletes are refusing to stand for the national anthem in protest over police killings of unarmed black men, the presidential candidates were asked about the issue in their debate on Monday, and this morning there was yet another police-on-black shooting, this time near San Diego.

With this subject in mind, we bring you this story of what an ordinary black family can face when they need the police.

Take for example this series of tweets from by Tristan Riddell, who is best known for his Nerd Party network podcasts The Senate Floor and Nerd Nuptial. For his day job, he works as a videographer/video editor at Northwestern University.

“One of my favourite students had his car stolen last night. He’s a 17 year old black male. Thought it would be a good idea to call the cops. 

Groceries in hand he checks his LoJack app first and can see that its moving down the road. Cops arrive and immediately frisk him.

They ask him if he’s on drugs. He tries to tell them that he just wants his car back.

He shows them on his phone exactly where his car is. They don’t believe him so they put him in the squad car and take him in. They process him and take his fingerprints.

He gets to call his mum and she raises hell. After a long time they let him go.”

They then allow him to go get his car and the window is broken in. It was exactly where the app said.”

This never would have happened to me because I’m white. He called the cops asking for help and got treated like a criminal.

Just because he’s black and could afford a fancy car.”

Here are the final two tweets in the story:

We reached out to the student who has, so far, not responded to our questions. Riddell has not revealed his identity nor said what city and police department where this occurred, except to reveal that it happened in Illinois.

It seems likely it was in or near Chicago because Northwestern is located in the Chicago suburb of Evanston (though we have no evidence that the incident took place there).

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