Languages
Page last updated at 19:05 GMT, Tuesday, 21 July 2009 20:05 UK

Row over US black scholar arrest

Henry Louis Gates
Prof Henry Louis Gates spent four hours in custody, his lawyer says

Police have apologised to a black Harvard scholar whose arrest last week on his own front doorstep sparked allegations of racism.

Prof Henry Louis Gates was held last week in Cambridge, Massachusetts, home to the top university where he teaches.

Police were called after a woman reported she saw two black males with backpacks trying to force entry.

Cambridge police have now dropped a disorderly conduct charge, calling the arrest "regrettable and unfortunate".

The 58-year-old professor had reportedly told arresting officers "this is what happens to black men in America".

Kelly Downes from Cambridge police said the arrest was "regrettable and unfortunate"

Handcuffed on porch

His lawyer said Prof Gates had just returned from a trip overseas and, upon arriving at the property with a driver, found his front door jammed and had to force it open.

By the time police arrived at the house, he and the driver had managed to get inside the property.

"Professor Gates informed the officer that he lived there and was a faculty member at Harvard university," lawyer Charles Ogletree said in a statement.

After providing the officer with his university ID card and driver's licence, the African-American studies scholar was handcuffed on his front porch, the lawyer said.

A police report said the academic had "exhibited loud and tumultuous behaviour".



Print Sponsor


SEE ALSO
Obama urges 'new black mindset'
17 Jul 09 |  Americas
Historic African trip for Obama
11 Jul 09 |  Africa
Black Washington looks to Obama
17 Jan 09 |  Obama inauguration
US boycotts UN racism conference
18 Apr 09 |  Americas

RELATED INTERNET LINKS
The BBC is not responsible for the content of external internet sites



FEATURES, VIEWS, ANALYSIS
Has China's housing bubble burst?
How the world's oldest clove tree defied an empire
Why Royal Ballet principal Sergei Polunin quit

BBC navigation

BBC © 2013 The BBC is not responsible for the content of external sites. Read more.

This page is best viewed in an up-to-date web browser with style sheets (CSS) enabled. While you will be able to view the content of this page in your current browser, you will not be able to get the full visual experience. Please consider upgrading your browser software or enabling style sheets (CSS) if you are able to do so.

Americas Africa Europe Middle East South Asia Asia Pacific