Black Man Driving White Wife to Work Accused of Being Illegal Cab Driver, Has Car Seized
A New York couple is suing the city’s Taxi and Limousine Commission after taxi investigators accused the black husband who was driving his white wife to work of being an illegal cab driver and seized his car.
According to reports, 66-year-old Dan Keys Jr. and 53-year-old Symone Palermo are suing the TLC for $3 million, alleging that investigators racially profiled Keys when they issued them summonses and seized their Lincoln Town Car for more than a week despite multiple attempts to explain that they were married.
They claim that TLC investigators pulled over Keys, who works as a car salesman, and mistook Palermo for a passenger.
The lawsuit states “upon information and belief, when attempting to identify illegally operated taxis, it is the official policy or custom of [the city and the TLC] to instruct its employees to target and single out vehicles operated by minorities with white passengers.”
In fact, the lawsuit also states that investigators lied and claimed that “a white female passenger confirmed to them that he was an unlicensed hack.”
When Palermo tried to explain, they were both issued summonses.
Their lawyer, David Haber, told DNAInfo “we think there was no basis for the TLC to have pulled over my clients in the first instance. Once they pulled over my clients, they had many opportunities to let them go – to realize they pulled over the wrong people. Instead they doubled down on their mistake. I believe that they flat-out lied in their summonses.”
The original judge agreed, dismissing both summonses but now the TLC is on the hook for a potential $3 million payout for their racial profiling and false statements.