Taraji P. Henson Apologizes to Police After Racial Profiling Claims

by Meredith B. Kile 5:17 PM PDT, March 27, 2015
Photo: Getty Images

Taraji P. Henson has issued an apology after claiming that her son was racially profiled by police during a traffic stop.

"I would like to publicly apologize to the officer and the Glendale Police Department," the Empire star wrote on Instagram. "A mother’s job is not easy and neither is a police officer’s. Sometimes as humans we over react without gathering all of the facts."

Henson made the accusations in a recent interview with Uptown magazine, claiming that Glendale police illegally searched her son Marcell Johnson’s car after pulling him over.

"My child has been racially profiled. He was in Glendale, Calif., and did exactly everything the cops told him to do, including letting them illegally search his car," Henson said in the interview. "It was bogus because they didn't give him the ticket for what he was pulled over for."

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After Henson’s claims incited social media outrage and "unwarranted threats," the Glendale police department released a statement on the traffic stop, clarifying that Johnson admitted that he had marijuana and Ritalin in his car after being pulled over for failing to yield to a pedestrian, and that the 20-year-old consented to the search of his vehicle.

"The video and audio recordings substantiate that the traffic stop and the vehicle search that Marcell consented to was legal, and Marcell told the officer he had illegal drugs in the vehicle before a search took place," said Glendale Police Chief Robert Castro in the statement. "Marcell was cooperative, and the officers were professional...The contact and actions with Marcell Johnson were legal, professional and empathetic."

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Henson, who said she planned to send Marcell to Howard University instead of USC after the incident, also thanked the police in her Instagram apology, adding the hashtag "#TurningANegativeIntoAPositive."

"As a mother in this case I over reacted and for that I apologize," she added. "Thank you to that officer for being kind to my son."

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