The 21-year-old man who was racially profiled at Barneys after purchasing a luxury belt in 2013, will receive a $45,000 settlement from the City of New York.
Trayon Christian, then a Queens College student, was shopping at Barneys’ flagship location almost three years ago when he decided to buy a $350 Salvatore Ferragamo belt. Christian, who said he had just received his work-study check, selected his belt of choice, paid for it using his Chase bank card, and showed the cashier his state ID upon request. Shortly after, Christian left the store only to be approached by two NYPD officers because the store phoned 911 under suspicion that he was committing credit card fraud.
Christian explained the incident in an issue of the New York Daily News at the time. “The detectives were asking me, ‘How could you afford a belt like this? Where did you get this money from?’” He was then detained for 40 minutes and released without being charged.
According to Reuters, a spokesman from the New York City law department said, “Settling was in the best interest of the city.” Barneys’ payout to Christian has not been announced.
Following Christian’s lawsuit, the company was fined $525,000 in 2014, hired an anti-profiling consulting firm, and retrained its employees.