Terry Crews Says He Was Racially Profiled Right Before His Senate Testimony

Terry Crews Says He Was Racially Profiled Right Before His Senate Testimony

April 17, 2019

While we were unable to include everything we wanted to include in our exclusive cover story on the Brooklyn Nine-Nine star, there is context worth highlighting for Crews’s answer to a question Senator Dianne Feinstein put to him when he testified before the Senate Judiciary Committee in June 2018. Feinstein asked Crews why he didn’t just push Adam Venit away after the Hollywood producer was alleged to have sexually assaulted Crews at a Hollywood party in 2016. (Crews sued Venit, but the two parties settled the case in September 2018 after Venit apologized and agreed to resign from the WME agency. Crews posted the apology on Twitter.)

Crews tells Men’s Health that as he answered Feinstein’s question, he was thinking of an incident that occurred the day before his testimony, at his hotel in Washington, D.C. Here’s what happened:

Crews had asked an employee if he could borrow a charger. The staffer looked at Crews. He said he didn’t have a charger. “Well, do you know where I can get one?” Crews asked him. The hotel worker said that, actually, the hotel did have chargers, but that if he wanted one, he would have to pay. Crews asked how much, and the employee said fifty dollars. Crews told him he could put it on his room, and the employee replied, “Cash only.” Crews asked him what the deal was. The employee said, “Do you want it or not?”

Crews told him he could put the phone charger on his room, and the employee replied, “Cash only.”

Crews did not. He walked away, and he, his publicist, and activist Amanda Nguyen, who was also testifying, went to the hotel restaurant. As they were dining, a different employee soon came in, placed a charger on the table, and apologized. Crews thanked the employee and they continued their meal. When they left the restaurant, the original employee was standing in the lobby. Someone had evidently told the person that Terry Crews, supposed charger-scammer, was actually Terry Crews, actor and former NFL player.

“[The employee] says, ‘I’m so sorry,’” Crews recalls. “What happened? What was that about sir? What was that about? Then [the employee] looked at me. ‘I’m just sorry, I apologize.’”

The incident came back to Crews when he was addressing Feinstein. “I’m at the hotel getting treated like this,” Crews recalls. “It was just a small thing, but when I go to the hearing the next day… It was like, I am representing the millions and millions of people who have been pushed down, who have been abused by power. Whether it’s white or black, rich or poor, male or female—all kinds of dynamics where someone has put themselves above you. I was ready.”

Read more in our exclusive story.

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