(NEW YORK POST) – “Permit Patty” and “BBQ Becky” are starting to get some stiff competition.
A resident of an upscale neighborhood in Oakland, Calif., reportedly called the cops on a black firefighter last month for simply doing his job.
Kevin Moore, of Station 24, was conducting city-mandated vegetation inspections around homes in Montclair Hills — in full uniform — when he was reported to police on May 16, according to the San Francisco Chronicle.
The local smoke-eater had his radio on him and was holding a clipboard, with his fire truck parked nearby, but that didn’t matter. A resident thought he looked suspicious and decided to call 911.
“It’s extremely unfortunate,” said fire Capt. Damon Covington, president of the Oakland Black Firefighters Association.
“From the outside, it certainly appears to be unfair and unwarranted,” he told the Chronicle. “The fire service is a microcosm of the world. Racism exists in the world, and it exists in Oakland and everywhere else.”
In a separate incident that very same day, Moore — who was honored for “bravery and heroism” in 2008 — was videotaped and questioned by a second resident who also found him suspicious.
The firefighter had just started inspecting the man’s property when he was reportedly confronted.
“He kind of startled me,” recalled Moore. “He says, ‘Well, what are you doing here?’ I say, ‘We’re here doing our annual vegetation inspection.’ Then he asks for ID. I say no problem. He takes a picture of my ID and says I need to get a different one. I’ve had that ID for years. It’s kind of dark, and I’m more of a dark-skinned black guy, but you can still see me.”
Footage of Moore was reportedly sent to the Montclair Hills police community liaison officer, who then forwarded it to fire officials. The resident claimed in an email that he thought Moore looked suspicious because he was wearing sneakers. Officials told the Chronicle, however, that this is actually normal for firefighters to do when conducting vegetation inspections, officials said.
“It’s obvious he’s doing an inspection,” said Vince Crudele, supervisor of the OFD inspection program. “Kevin’s wearing his blue wool firefighter pants, he’s got a radio and (a department) jacket and shirt on. It’s unfortunate that somebody would mistake an Oakland firefighter, a professional who would go into harm’s way every day to protect citizens, as someone who was there for criminal intent. Kevin’s out there doing his job well and representing the Oakland Fire Department with the highest integrity.”
The individuals involved in the two incidents in Montclair now join the growing chorus of Bay Area residents accused of racial profiling in recent months.
One woman from Oakland — dubbed “BBQ Becky” — was caught on video in April calling police on a black family that was barbecuing at a local lake. Another from San Francisco, who is being referred to as “Permit Patty,” went viral just last week after she called the cops on an 8-year-old black girl who was selling water without a permit.