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Updated: Queens Teen Slaps Barneys With Discrimination Suit

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Photo by Brian Harkin
Photo by Brian Harkin

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Trayon Christian, a 19-year-old engineering student from Queens, just wanted to splurge a little at Barneys. But according to the New York Daily News, things played out a little differently for Christian, who was arrested after buying a $349 Ferragamo belt.

According to the suit, two undercover cops followed him out the store after he made his purchase and asked him "how a young black man such as himself could afford to purchase such an expensive belt." They accused him of using a stolen credit card, and then cuffed him before detaining him for two hours. Once released, Christian returned the belt and vowed never to shop at Barneys again. He also retained a lawyer and is now suing both the NYPD and the department store for damages.—Cambrey Thomas

Update: Racked National reports that Barneys has released an official statement speaking to the allegation that an employee called undercover cops afrer Trayon Christian purchased the belt. They write:

Barneys New York typically does not comment on pending litigation. In this instance, we feel compelled to note that after carefully reviewing the incident of last April, it is clear that no employee of Barneys New York was involved in the pursuit of any action with the individual other than the sale. Barneys New York has zero tolerance for any form of discrimination and we stand by our long history in support of all human rights.

A spokesperson from the NYPD also told the NYDN that Christian wasn't detained for two hours and that the actual time spent in the precinct was around 40 minutes.

Update #2, 10/24: The New York Post published its own story today about another shopper, Kayla Phillips, who says that Barneys also racially profiled her after she purchased a $2,500 Céline bag Read her story here.
· All Barneys New York Coverage [Racked NY]
· Barneys accused teen of using fake debit card [NYDN]

Barneys New York, Madison

660 Madison Avenue, Manhattan, NY 10065 (212) 826-8900 Visit Website