Days after a couple called the cops on a man for stenciling "Black Lives Matter" on his own property, both have apologized and one has been fired.
In a now-viral video posted to Twitter Thursday, Robert Larkin and Lisa Alexander confronted San Francisco resident James Juanillo on the sidewalk as he was writing the message in chalk on the retaining wall in front of his home.
"Are you defacing private property or is this your building?" Larkin says. "You're free to express your opinions, but not on people's property."
"Absolutely," Alexander adds. "Just respectfully, so we're just saying, absolutely, your signs and everything and that's good. This — this is not the way to do it."
Juanillo then asks if it would be OK to write the message on the wall if he lived at the house and points out that they don't know whether he lives there or not. In response, Alexander suggests that they have reason to believe that Juanillo doesn't live there because they allegedly "know the person who does live here."
The couple then accuses him of committing a crime before walking away to call the police.
On Monday, financial services firm Raymond James said they had fired Larkin, whom they did not name, after investigating the incident, saying that the couple's actions "were inconsistent with our values."
"Raymond James has zero tolerance for racism or discrimination of any kind," the company said in a statement. "An inclusive workplace is fundamental to our culture ... and we expect our associates to conduct themselves appropriately inside and outside of the workplace."
Alexander, who is CEO of skincare company LaFace, has also received professional backlash. Beauty subscription service Birchbox on Saturday announced it would not work with her company in the future.
The couple also apologized in separate statements Sunday, saying they were wrong to question Juanillo and have a lot to learn about racism.
"I should have minded my own business," Alexander said in her statement. "I did not realize at the time that my actions were racist and have learned a painful lesson."
Juanillo told ABC7 News that when the police arrived, they recognized him immediately and left without getting out of their car.
"What she did is polite racism," Juanillo said in an interview with the TV station. "It's respectable racism. 'Respectfully, sir, I don't think you belong here.'"