Yesterday KHOU reported the story about a young Tulsa Oklahoma female dancer travelling with her instructor and dance partner. Houston police dragged them out of their car, handcuffed them, and took Landry Thompson, the young female dancer to Protective Services.
Landry Thompson is 13 years old and white. Her dance instructor, Emmanuel Hurd, is 29 and black. Her dance partner, Josiah Kelly is 22 and black. The Houston police officers were made aware at the time that Landry’s mother gave Emmanuel Hurd a notarized letter naming him her guardian for the duration of the trip. Irrespective of the evidence, they treated Hurd and Kelly as suspects or criminals and Thompson as a potential victim.
Today KHOU reports that Houston police (HPD) has finally responded to their actions. HPD said, “Given the age discrepancies between all involved, the fact that all three were from out of state, and the child had no relatives in the area … officers, in an abundance of caution, did their utmost to ensure her safety. In this instance, that involved further investigation by CPS.”
Emmanuel Hurd in a subsequent KHOU interview was asked if he thought it would have been different if Landry Thompson was black or he was white. Hurd did not hesitate to answer, “Yes, absolutely, one hundred percent absolutely.”
Landry’s mother, Destiny Thompson said that when the Houston Police called her, she was surprised by his tone. “Are you aware your daughter is with two black men,” she said the police officer asked. “When I said yes I am aware of that, he started calling into question our parenting,” she said.
The fact is that Landry Thompson is home schooled. She travels frequently for dance. Her parents made sure their daughter was well protected on the trip.
They asked Emmanuel Hurd to look after their daughter in Houston and ensured he had all the necessary information and documentation to do so. “He had a letter signed by us. He had every contact number they could possibly have needed. He had her insurance card. He had her original birth certificate, not a copy”, said Destiny Thompson.
Houston police response and actions make it clear this was a racial incident.
One would hope that any two adult men irrespective of race with a minor seemingly in distress would raise suspicion. This was not the case here. The suspicion was that a young white girl was travelling with two black men.
Houston Police decided to disregard the will of Landry Thompson’s parents. They said out of an abundance of caution they took her to Protective Services. It is evident that the real caution was the questioning of the parenting of Landry’s mother and father. After-all, they did not arrest Emmanuel Hurd or Josiah Kelly for any type of suspicion. These men waited for 6 hours for them to release their student/dance partner. The fact is simple, obvious, and evident, Houston police’s judgment was clouded by their innate racism.