After a scuffle involving his checked bags, Jason Derulo is accusing American Airlines of racial profiling. The “Ridin’ Solo” singer and his eight-man entourage attempted to check a total of 19 bags for a trip from Miami International Airport en route to Los Angeles on Wednesday afternoon (Feb. 8). Reportedly, an employee told him he wasn’t allowed to check all the bags, so he boarded the plane, and left a member of his crew behind to handle the situation.
As the plane moved away from the gate, one of the men that was left behind informed Derulo that he was charged a total of $4,000 for all the checked luggage. Suddenly, Derulo halted the plane, and demanded to be let off the aircraft.
“We’d never paid for our bags because of our status—with all of our miles—so we’d never paid for bags. So $4,000 is obviously a huge sum. We were like, ‘No, we’re not paying that. We’ve got to turn the plane around,” he told People.
When he and his friends decided to exit the plane, he recalled the captain being disrespectful. “And that was really upsetting to me because I felt like he was trying to make it seem like we were delinquents, and he was kicking us off the plane, when it was us that asked to get off the plane. I was like, ‘Listen, sir, you’re not going to talk down to me; I’m not your son. Don’t talk to me in that tone of voice.’”
Derulo is a member of American Airlines’ Concierge Key Program, which only allows three free checked bags. Given how the airline handled the situation afterwards, Derulo claims it was all a product of racism.
The pop artist took to Instagram and posted a picture of an American Airline employee, captioning the image: “I spent millions on your airline throughout the past ten years between myself and my entire staff but have still experienced racial discrimination today at miami airport!!! Called 15 police officers on me as if I’m a criminal!” he wrote. “It’s not ok that when you find out who I am the gears change!”
.@americanair I spent millions on your airline throughout the past ten years between myself and my entire staff but have still experienced racial discrimination today at miami airport!!! Called 15 police officers on me as if I’m a criminal! It’s not ok that when you find out who I am the gears change! Fuck that!! I want answers #conciergekey #conciergekeymember #thecaptainneedstoshowrespecttoo cause he could #cashmeoutsidehowboutdat #notypo #ifiwasanyoneelseiwouldhavebeenarrested
“As you can imagine, I’m surrounded by 15 police officers, I’m not going to curse back because I know what’s going to happen,” he continued. “So I pick up my phone, and I go live on my Instagram.”
Watch a video of Derulo speaking on the incident courtesy of TMZ.