A black man who was a registered guest at a DoubleTree hotel in Portland, Oregon was asked to leave by hotel officials while he was sitting in the lobby making a phone call, reports the CBS affiliate there, KOIN-TV. Jermaine Massey, of Kent, Washington, was in Portland to see rapper Travis Scott at the Moda Center Saturday, OregonLive/The Oregonian reports, when he got a late night call from his mother on the East Coast.
He sat in the lobby of the DoubleTree to take the call. While he was on the phone, a security guard came up to him, told him to leave and called police.
Massey recorded the encounter with a security guard named Earl on his phone and posted it to Instagram. In those posts, he claims he was racially profiled.
At one point, Massey explains to Earl that he is a hotel guest and Earl replies, "Not anymore."
Hotel management told police Massey was trespassing. When offiers arrived, hotel employees pointed out Massey as the trespasser.
In the Instagram post, Massey inists he's being harassed and Earl accuses him of loitering.
Massey wrote: "They already had in their minds that they didn't want me there so I waited for the cops to show up and when they did, I explained my side of the story and they didn't want to hear it. They asked me if I had personal items in my room (which of course I did) and asked me to go retrieve them. They told me that since the hotel requested me to leave, that if I didn't I would be considered a trespasser and would be thrown in jail. I complied and cooperated and was not issued a refund for my room. I packed my stuff and went to another hotel."
Portland police confirmed that account in a statement to KOIN, adding that they offered Massey help in finding a new hotel but Massey didn't take them up on it.
The Oregonian/OregonLive reports DoubleTree management issued a statement saying the whole incident was a misunderstanding and their hotel staff doesn't discriminate against people based on race.
In a Wednesday statement to KOIN, DoubleTree General Manager Paul Peralta called the incident "unfortunate," adding, "We are sorry that this matter ended the way it did and have reached out to the gentleman in order to resolve this matter. … Our hotel does not discriminate against any individual or group. We look forward to speaking with him."
In the conclusion of his Instagram post, Massey wrote, "It is never OK to discriminate against guests for the color of their skin and to prejudge them based on your own bias against that race. Earl is a disgrace, calls himself a man but calls the Portland Police Dept on a man who was minding his own business in the lobby of his hotel. I had my hotel key in my hand the entire conversation, he knew I was a guest. He wanted to prove a point and did it in the worst way. Not really shocked that this happened but just extremely disappointed. I will be seeking justice. Believe that. @doubletree @doubletreepdx@hiltonhonors #hilton #hiltonhotels#racism #racisminamerica #racismisreal@shaunking
KOIN hasn't heard back from Massey or from DoubleTree corporate officials.