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Scholar Mistaken For Thief, Racial Profiling Alleged

Harvard University professor Henry Louis Gates, Jr., often referenced as one of the nation's lead scholars, was arrested last week on his porch in Cambridge, Mass., after authorities mistook him for a burglar, described to police as a black male.

But although Gates presented identification and indicated he was owner of the home, he was still handcuffed and arrested on charges of disorderly conduct.

The author and professor's high profile has attracted widespread attention to the case, along with Gates' belief that he was racially profiled. The incident is resurfacing strong opinions on the practice of racial profiling by some law enforcement agencies.

Charles Ogletree, fellow Harvard Professor and Gates' attorney in the case, gives details of the police confrontation and explains why his client and believes race factored into his arrest. (Through Ogletree, Gates recently issued a statement with his account of what happened. )

Copyright 2023 NPR. To see more, visit https://www.npr.org.

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