I left the CNN Grill at about 1:05 AM, and walked in search of a cab. From memory, I walked out and immediately turned left, and walked a good three blocks down that street next to the site of the CNN grill. I walked in to one eatery just to say “hello” to a new friend and her entourage, then walked out, turning left again and walking up hill and up the street.
At anout 3rd and Tryon, I asked a group of police officers standing – three forward most (one of them brunette female and white) where I can catch a cab. She pointed to a place on Tryon about 70 feet away and to my left.
I walked over there, and upon my arrival encountered an older-looking black man with dredlocks and a white t-shirt. He informed me, without my asking, that he was standing there for 2 hours.
So, I walked back to the officers and said “Hey that’s a two hour wait, if at all. Isnt’ there a hotel I can stand at?” The woman said that I could, or call 740- and some numbers I did not know. I explained that my cell phone was dead.
So this bald white police officer (male) moved forward with his arms crossed and said “Well, what do you want us to do?”
I said that I wanted them to call the number. That bald white police officer, and his working friend (who was about 6-5, clean shaven, white, kind of a “jar-head” look, no glasses, wide eyes) said “Well do you want us to call him.”
“Yes,” was my response, “that would be the logical thing to do.”
Then, the 6-5 friend said “We won’t do that. We’re working,” and the bald headed guy said “No.” Normally, any right-thinking person would be happy to call; not these guys. I said “Are you kidding me?”
“You have an attitude,” the 6-5 guy says. I said I’m just trying to get back to my hotel, and I don’t have a way to get there, and no means to call a cab.
As I walked someone of the officers said “Good luck.” I walked about 8 feet, and heard one of them laugh. So I turned around, walked back to her and the group. I said to the 6-5 guy “What’s your name?” He said that it was on his badge. I asked for his full name. He said – or I thought he said “Mark” – but not his street. I then said I was calling the Mayor of Charlotte, and walked away.
I looked for another set of officers to complain about the first group there near convention center. They were down a block – I think either 4th or 2nd. They, also as it happens, were from Hickory, NC – they did help me after I complained about what happened. They found a cab for me.
But no one at the Democratic National Convention should have to go through what I went through. That was awful. I don’t care what the reason was – racism, or whatever – I just want the police officers stationed at 3rd and Tryon Street last night off the street and away from DNC 2012 attendees.