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Oakland Residents Actually Called The Cops After Questioning And Filming A Black Firefighter On The Job

By Jonna Ivin-Patton

Kevin Moore was having just another regular day of work as a firefighter in Oakland, California, this time by participating in a safety inspection. The result? Residents filmed him, asked for his ID and called police. All in a day's work––if you happen to be African-American.


Moore was in an upscale neighborhood completing mandatory outdoor inspections of vegetation growing around homes. He was in uniform, with clipboard and radio, but if this wasn't enough indication that he was with the fire department, the big fire truck parked on the street may have been a clue.

If the calls and demands for ID weren't enough, one resident even went so far as to email security footage of Moore to the Oakland Police Department. The big, scary crime? Moore, in uniform, knocking on a door.  In a statement to reporters, Moore said:

I try to put myself in other people’s shoes, like if I see someone in my yard, I’d ask what they’re doing.  That’s why I always call out, ‘Hello! Hello! Oakland Fire Department!’ Because I want to be heard. I just don’t want somebody to look out their window and see somebody in their backyard.