UPDATED: 4:18 p.m. ET —
The husband of a white woman who called cops on a man who wrote “Black Lives Matter” in chalk on his own property in San Francisco has been fired over his role in the latest episode of the ongoing “Karen” chronicles of vigilante white women. On Monday, the financial services firm that employed Lisa Alexander tweeted that his employment had been terminated.
“Raymond James has zero tolerance for racism and discrimination of any kind. An inclusive workplace is fundamental to our culture, one in which people are free to bring their whole selves to their careers, and we expect our associates to conduct themselves appropriately inside and outside the workplace,” the company tweeted. “After an investigation into the circumstances of a video alleging racism by one of our associates, we have concluded that the actions of he and his partner were inconsistent with our values, and the associate is no longer employed by Raymond James.”
Alexander’s husband was identified by CBS San Francisco as a man named Robert Larkin.
One white woman came to a blatant realization that could save many “Karens” from spiraling down the road of racist profiling and cop-calling:
“I should have minded my own business.”
Lisa Alexander came to this realization too late, however, considering she called the cops on a San Francisco man stenciling “Black Lives Matter” on his own property. Now, the CEO of a cosmetics company is facing the consequences.
According to Associated Press, James Juanillo posted the video on his Facebook page on Tuesday. It shows Alexander and a guy questioning Juanillo about whether he lives at the property where he’s stenciling “Black Lives Matter” on the retaining wall in chalk. Eventually, the couple asserts that they know Juanillo doesn’t live at the home and accuse him of breaking the law.
When Juanillo tells Alexander “you don’t know if I live here or if this is my property,” Alexander responds, “We actually do know, that’s why we’re asking.”
Juanillo responds, “Oh really, because you live here,” to which Alexander says “Because we know the person who does live here.”
Catching Alexander in a blatant lie, Juanillo invites her to call the police or to call the owner of the property. At one point, Juanillo and Alexander ask for each other’s names. Alexander provides her first name but Juanillo doesn’t give his name at all. Alexander insists she has the upper hand in the conversation because she and the man, who identifies himself as “Robert,” aren’t “doing anything illegal.” Juanillo responds, “Neither am I,” to which Alexander says “Yes you are actually.” This is when the couple leaves the premise with Alexander assuring that she will call the cops.
Eventually, the video made it’s way to Twitter where Juanillo summed up the incident saying:
“A white couple call the police on me, a person of color, for stencilling a #BLM chalk message on my own front retaining wall. ‘Karen’ lies and says she knows that I don’t live in my own house, because she knows the person who lives here.”
Juanillo, who is Filipino, explained to KGO-TV that he believes the couple accused him of defacing private property and breaking the law because they didn’t believe he belonged in the wealthy Pacific Heights neighborhood. He said a cop pulled up not too long after the encounter and drove away after recognizing Juanillo as a longtime resident.
The video Juanillo posted went viral with over 15 million views on Twitter and it even caused one company to cut ties with Alexander’s business LaFace Skincare. Birchbox, which distributes beauty products via a subscription service, announced on Saturday that it would not do business with Alexander’s company because of her “racist actions.”
Alexander has since apologized to Juanillo in a statement saying:
“There are not enough words to describe how truly sorry I am for being disrespectful to him last Tuesday when I made the decision to question him about what he was doing in front of his home. I should have minded my own business.”
She continued, “When I watch the video I am shocked and sad that I behaved the way I did.” Alexander went on to say that she intends to learn from the incident and she wants to apologize to Juanillo in person. Juanillo said he would be open to a conversation with Alexander.
“For me this experience has left me feeling vindicated and validated. I imagine that she regrets those couple of minutes,” he said. “Do I believe that her life should be destroyed over this? No. I just hope that she realizes that what she did was racist and she can improve from this incident.”
Juanillo said that since the encounter took place, neighbors have been showing support by leaving flowers and notes at his property with many adding to the chalk art on the retaining wall and sidewalk.
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