Atlanta cops cleared in Tyler Perry racial-profiling case
Two Atlanta white police officers whom actor and director Tyler Perry accused of racial profiling after a prolonged traffic stop have just been cleared of all allegations — this following an internal investigation made by the Atlanta Police Department.
According to the investigation report, the two Atlanta officers were let off the hook after a four-month internal investigation concluded that “the actions of both officers with the regard to the traffic stop of Mr. Perry were justified, lawful and proper.”
In a lengthy Facebook post detailing his version of events, “Alex Cross” actor Tyler Perry claimed that back in February, he was on his way from his Atlanta-area studio to the airport when he was apprehended by two white police officers for making an illegal turn.
After Tyler Perry explained that he made the turn to make sure he was not being followed, the cops allegedly turned hostile all of a sudden, repeatedly questioned him and refused to let him go.
“It was so hostile. I was so confused,” Perry wrote in his Facebook post. “It was happening so fast that I could easily see how this situation could get out of hand very quickly. I didn’t feel safe at all.”
The filmmaker claimed that it was only when a third officer, who was a black man, arrived at the scene and recognized Tyler Perry that he was allowed to go his way.
However, the Atlanta police department’s investigation has a different side to the incident.
According to the report, the two white police officers — who were members of an auto theft task force — flagged down Tyler Perry because his sports car resembled a vehicle which had been reported stolen.
One police officer denied stopping the filmmaker because he was black, while the other claimed he “didn’t look at the driver” before the traffic stop.
The report also states that the third Atlanta police officer—who had recognized Tyler Perry—told his colleagues that “the guy was a billionaire” and confirmed that the vehicle couldn’t have been stolen.
The investigation found that the cops’ only questionable actions were that they did not alert dispatchers about the traffic stop, and that one of them reached into Perry’s car to turn off the engine.
Tyler Perry’s rep refused to give a comment on the investigation.
Last year, the multi hyphenate filmmaker topped Forbes magazine’s list of the highest-paid men in entertainment, with a tremendous $130 million in earnings between May 2010 and May 2011.