Student says Barney’s discriminated against him for buying pricey belt

trayon christian barney's
Teenager Trayon Christian was detained by police after he bought a belt from Barney’s.
Credit: Facebook / Trayon Christian

A student from Corona, Queens, just wanted to look like his hip-hop idol Juelz Santana when he bought a $350 Ferragamo belt at Barney’s in April. Instead, Trayon Christian, 19, was handcuffed and detained for two hours by police officers after a Barney’s clerk called them to say she believed the purchase was fraudulent. He filed a lawsuit against the department store on Monday.

At the time, Christian was working at City Tech, where he studies, and saving his money for the expensive belt after he saw a photo of Juelz Santana wearing one. His lawyer, Michael Palillo, said Christian walked into the Madison Avenue store to buy the designer accessory. Palillo said the store clerk asked him for ID, and Christian complied and made the purchase with his debit card.

But after Christian walked out of the store, he was stopped just a block away by plainclothes police officers after the clerk told them that Christian had made a fraudulent purchase. Palillo said the officers accused Christian of using a fraudulent credit card. Christian denied the allegation and showed them his debit card, New York driver’s license and student ID to prove that the card was his.

Christian wanted a Ferragamo belt like the one rapper Juelz Santana wore.  Credit: Getty / Metro
Christian wanted a Ferragamo belt like the one rapper Juelz Santana wore.
Credit: Getty / Metro

Still, he was handcuffed and taken to the 19th Precinct where he was detained in a cell for two hours. Palillo said officers eventually let him go and told him they had made a mistake.

“He was shocked, scared and humiliated. He’s telling me the only reason he was arrested was because he was a young black male,” said Palillo. “Barney’s didn’t think he fit the profile of other people who shop in their store.” Palillo added that the department store never apologized to Christian for the incident.

Christian was so upset by the incident that he returned the belt to the store a few days later. “Not only was he humiliated, but he doesn’t want this to happen to anyone else,” said Palillo of the lawsuit.

The city’s law department did not immediately respond to Metro’s request for comment on the lawsuit. Barney’s did not immediately return a call for comment.


News
Entertainment
Sports
Lifestyle
Local

Best nature spots for kids in New York…

When it comes to kids and nature, most U.S. parents agree: children should be spending more time outdoors. According to a recent survey by The…

Local

Easter 2014: The year's best bonnets

It's Easter, and that means it's time for Fifth Avenue to turn into a veritable catwalk of bonnet-wearers. The annual march, which kicks off at…

Local

Woman arrested for attempted kidnapping of baby in…

Authorities said that a Queens woman behind an attempted kidnapping of an 8-month-old baby boy was arrested on Saturday.

Local

Hate crime charge in attack on Sikh Columbia…

A man has been arrested and charged with a hate crime after he allegedly pulled the beard of a Sikh Columbia University professor as part…

Television

‘Mad Men’ recap: Season 7, Episode 2, ‘A…

Peggy and Lou are horrible, Bert's racist, Don is honest(ish) and Roger and Pete are frustrated. "A Day's Work" not quite worthy of "This Will Be Our Year."

Television

'Game of Thrones' recap: Season 4, Episode 3,…

The problem with the devil you know is that ignoring them doesn’t mean they simply lie in wait. It allows them time to do things…

Television

Discovery cancels 'Everest Jump Live' special in wake…

The Discovery Channel has indicated it will not be moving forward with "Everest Jump Live," a planned special about mountain climber Joby Ogwyn's effort to…

The Word

'X-Men' director Bryan Singer drama continues

  News broke late last week that "X-Men" and "The Usual Suspects" director Bryan Singer is being sued by a man who said Singer molested…

NHL

Rangers let chance at victory slip away in…

All the Rangers had to do was hold serve in a raucous Madison Square Garden — roaring in anticipation of putting a hated rival in a 2-0 series hole.

MLB

Yankees place Ivan Nova on DL with partially…

Yankees starter Ivan Nova was diagnosed with a partially torn UCL in his throwing elbow Sunday.

NHL

Rangers never thought opening round would be 'an…

You might have thought the Metropolitan Division semifinal series was going to be a rout after watching Game 1 Thursday night. The Rangers did not.

NHL

Rangers blow two-goal lead in Game 2 loss…

The Rangers got out to an early 2-0 lead in Game 2 and the Garden was rocking. But it went downhill quickly from there.

Travel

Packing: The one thing you need in your…

A new survey that looks at the travel habits of 50,000 people around the world has revealed that Western and Asian globetrotters have different priorities…

Home

Is your chair making it hard to talk?

Ever wished there was an office chair that could make impromptu meetings and discussions more private? The Cristiana Wing Chair is an asymmetrical armchair which…

Travel

Live large at these luxury hotels

From Thai boxing lessons and macabre Dracula tours to the Australian Outback, the Four Seasons hotel chain launched a series of new travel packages this…

Parenting

4 things that every summer camp should have

Alan Saltz, director of the 92nd street Y program lists things that every summer camp should have.