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Tyrese Gibson sues Home Depot for alleged racial profiling – TheFantasyTimes

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By Jitin Gambhir

Tyrese Gibson sues Home Depot for alleged racial profiling

Tyrese Gibson has initiated legal proceedings against The Home Depot, accusing the home improvement retailer of racial profiling. The lawsuit, filed by the 44-year-old actor/musician on Wednesday, includes two individuals who regularly provide construction services to him, named Eric Mora and Manuel Hernandez. According to the lawsuit obtained by People, Gibson, Mora, and Hernandez claim to have experienced discriminatory mistreatment and racial profiling during a visit to The Home Depot’s West Hills, Calif. location in February. The incident occurred when fans noticed Gibson, known for his role in the “Fast & Furious” franchise, in the store. To avoid any inconvenience, Gibson handed his credit card to his associates to complete the purchase while he waited in his car.

Gibson allegedly informed the cashier that Mora and Hernandez had permission to use his card. However, the cashier refused to process the transaction, even after Gibson returned to the store. The suit alleges that the cashier provided no reasonable explanation and insisted on seeing identification, citing “store policy.” The actor claims that The Home Depot employees engaged in racial profiling.

The suit further states that the store manager declined to speak with Gibson in person, and it was only after a heated discussion with the cashier that the transaction was finally completed. Gibson, Mora, and Hernandez believe that the cashier and other employees intentionally interfered with the transaction based on unfounded suspicion related to their skin color and, in the case of Mora and Hernandez, their national origin. Part of the encounter was captured on camera, where Gibson can be heard expressing his dissatisfaction with the cashier’s behavior.

The lawsuit criticizes The Home Depot for engaging in groundless suspicion based on Gibson’s skin color. In the video clip, Gibson also questions why he and his team were the first to be subjected to this policy, considering he has been living in the neighborhood for ten years. Gibson, Mora, and Hernandez are seeking damages of over $1 million, representing the amount Gibson claims to have spent at Home Depot throughout his lifetime. They are also seeking punitive damages and a declaratory judgment stating that the company’s actions violated California’s Unruh Civil Rights Act.

The lawsuit emphasizes that Gibson, Mora, and Hernandez are taking a stand against The Home Depot to hold the company accountable for discriminatory mistreatment and racial profiling. The actor emphasizes that there should be consequences for such behavior. The Home Depot has allegedly refused to take responsibility for the incident and instead has chosen to defend itself legally, suggesting that Gibson, Mora, and Hernandez are the problem.

When approached for comment, a spokesperson for The Home Depot assured that diversity and respect for all individuals are fundamental values of the company, and they do not tolerate any form of discrimination. The spokesperson further stated that they value Gibson as a customer and have made multiple attempts to address his concerns since the incident occurred, pledging to continue doing so.

Tyrese Gibson is suing The Home Depot over allegations the home improvement retailer racially profiled him.

The lawsuit was filed Wednesday by the actor/musician, 44, and two men described as associates who “regularly provide construction services” to him.

The suit, which was obtained by People, claims that Gibson, Eric Mora and Manuel Hernandez “experienced outrageous discriminatory mistreatment and consumer racial profiling” while visiting the company’s West Hills, Calif. location in February.

The suit claims that all three were finishing up their shopping when fans began noticing that the “Fast & Furious” franchise star was in the store, so he gave his associates his credit card to pay for the items and went to go wait in his car.

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Tyrese Gibson
Tyrese Gibson has filed a $1 million lawsuit against The Home Depot.
Getty Images for BET

Gibson allegedly told the cashier that he gave Mora and Hernandez permission to use his card.

However, the cashier allegedly “refused to complete the purchase transaction,” even after the “Transformers” actor returned to the store.

“The cashier gave no reasonable explanation other than repeating ‘store policy’ and demanded to see a form of identification,” the suit claims.


Home Depot cashier
Gibson claims employees at the home improvement retailer racially profiled him.
@tyrese

Home Depot cashier
A cashier at the West Hills, Calif., location allegedly “refused to complete [his and his associates’] purchase transaction.”
@tyrese

“The manager refused to speak with Gibson in person. It was only after significant heated discussion with the cashier that Gibson was finally able to complete the transaction.”

The suit goes on to allege that the cashier and other Home Depot employees “purposely interfered with and refused to process the transaction based on their groundless suspicion of Gibson, Mora and Hernandez arising from their skin color, and in the case of Mora and Hernandez, their national origin.”

During the encounter, part of which was filmed, Gibson could be heard telling the cashier, “I understand policy, but you know you’re being extra right now.”


Tyrese Gibson talking to Home Depot employees
The suit calls out the company for alleged “groundless suspicion” based on the actor/singer’s “skin color.”
@tyrese

Later on in the clip, the “Sweet Lady” singer explained to the cashier and other staffers, “My problem with what just happened is I’ve been living three blocks from here for 10 years, and if this is a policy, why are you the first person to stop my team and my ability to come in here?”


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Gibson, Mora and Hernandez are seeking over $1 million in damages — to reflect the amount the Hollywood star claims he’s spent at Home Depot locations over his lifetime — in addition to punitive damages and “a declaratory judgment declaring that” the company’s actions violated California’s Unruh Civil Rights Act.

“Gibson, Mora and Hernandez are taking a stand against The Home Depot to hold it accountable,” the suit reads. “The company needs to understand that there are consequences for discriminatory mistreatment and consumer racial profiling.”


Tyrese Gibson
“I’ve been living three blocks from here for 10 years, and if this is a policy, why are you the first person to stop my team and my ability to come in here?” Gibson said during the encounter.
WireImage

The suit further alleges that The Home Depot “has refused to take any responsibility” for the incident and has instead “doubled down, lawyered-up, and treated Gibson, Mora and Hernandez and what happened to them as not worthy of any due consideration — instead inferring that they are the problem.”

When contacted for comment, a spokesperson for The Home Depot told TheFantasyTimes in a statement, “Diversity and respect for all people are core to who we are, and we do not tolerate discrimination in any form.”

“We value Mr. Gibson as a customer, and in the months since this happened, we’ve reached out to him and his attorneys several times to try to resolve his concerns,” the statement continued. “We will continue to do so.”

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