Home ENTERTAINMENT Mark Curry goes live on Instagram during profiling incident

Mark Curry goes live on Instagram during profiling incident

by LATimes
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Workers at a Colorado hotel have been suspended following allegations of racial profiling levied by comedian Mark Curry over the weekend.

“Employees involved in this matter have been suspended, pending further investigation,” the Mining Exchange Hotel said in a statement posted Tuesday on its Instagram account.

The statement comes after the “Hangin’ With Mr. Cooper” star went live on Instagram to document hotel employees questioning whether he was a guest there and following him around the Wyndham Grand Hotel property in Colorado Springs, Colo.

“Black man and a Hotel Lobby it’s impossible that he has a room here. No, I have a suite !” the sitcom star captioned the profanity-laced video of the incident. Curry then provided the phone number of the hotel and directed his more than 223,000 Instagram followers to call to complain about his treatment.

The 61-year-old comic, who was performing at a nearby comedy club during his stay, alleged that he went to get coffee when workers who weren’t wearing badges walked up to him while he was sitting in lobby and asked to see his room key. They accused him of “pulling the race card” and he alleged that they were “harassing me, following me” during the video. Curry also approached the front desk in the footage to issue a complaint and asked them to call the police. But the woman there, whom he said checked him in, also asked if he was a guest and requested his ID.

“The only brother in here and you’re gonna ask me [for ID] for safety? Let’s ask all these people are they guests first and then I’ll tell you,” he told the front-desk worker during the video.

According to Colorado Springs Indy, Curry checked into the downtown hotel on Friday accompanied by Eric Phillips, the chief executive of 3E’s Comedy Club, without incident.

Phillips told the local news outlet that Curry visited the front desk to ask about a local attraction when a woman said “she wasn’t secure answering the question and another woman took that to mean she wasn’t secure with the Black man standing at the counter.”

Curry chronicled the rest of the ordeal in the video while he made his way around the hotel and eventually back to his room.

“Man, a Black man can’t go nowhere. A Black man can’t go nowhere in America,” Curry said in the video. “I want everybody to call this hotel… He was so upset. I did not know what his problem was. He did not want me in that lobby. They walked up to me in the lobby and said ‘This lobby is private’…what? And they stopped me… I want you guys to give this motherf— place a call and let them know what you think of them stopping Mark Curry.”

Curry told his followers that he planned to check out that night. On Tuesday, a representative for the comedian confirmed to The Times that he checked into “another hotel directly following the incident.” The representative directed further questions to Curry’s attorney, Daryl Keith Washington, who planned to issue a statement on behalf of the comic.

The hotel has since apologized and offered to compensate Curry for the stay and said it would retrain staff following the incident.

“We are committed to providing a safe and inclusive space for all guests and employees,” the Mining Exchange Hotel’s statement said. “We deeply regret this incident and have reached out to Mr. Curry to offer not only our sincere apologies but a full refund of his stay and an invitation to return, at no cost, anytime in the future.

“As a respected community partner, we are also using this opportunity to revisit training with our staff, helping to ensure all interactions are reflective of our company values,” the statement continued. “The Mining Exchange plays a special role in the Colorado Springs community and we will continue working each and every day to ensure that our hotel remains a space that is open and welcoming to all.”

The actor also received much celebrity support from followers including former “Hangin’” co-stars Raven-Symoné and Holly Robinson-Peete, reality star Claudia Jordan and comedians Guy Torry, D.L. Hughley and Russell Peters.

“No my ego ain’t hurt, because this has happened to me before. Because I’ve been around the world,” Curry said in response to one comment, according to the Indy. “It’s not my ego, it’s just that when you face racism, you gotta do something back about it. They think they can walk up to you and say anything they want. ‘Do you belong here?’ … No, I ain’t tellin’ you s—. It’s not my ego. It’s that when this happens, dial 719-323-2000, and let ‘em know we’ve got power too. We’ve got power. They would not do it to a white person.”

The comedian got his start performing at comedy clubs throughout the San Francisco Bay Area. He rose to prominence in the early 1990s starring in the ABC sitcom “Hangin’ With Mr. Cooper” about a former NBA star who becomes a school teacher. The show aired during the network’s popular “TGIF” block of family-friendly programming from 1992 to 1997. He also guest starred in “Martin,” “Living Single,” “The Jamie Foxx Show” “The Drew Carey Show,” “Fat Actress” and in the film “Armageddon.” More recently the touring comic has starred in Nickelodeon’s “See Dad Run.”

This story originally appeared on LATimes

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