BANKING WHILE BLACK: JP MORGAN CHASE CALLS COPS ON MAYOR RICHARD THOMAS
|Mayor Richard Thomas|
Chase calls cops on Mayor Richard Thomas while professionally and peacefully Inquiring about MV City's Signature Account.
Today Mayor Richard Thomas discussed how staff at JP Morgan Chase summoned the police on him, his staff member, and a Mount Vernon Police detective as the Mayor sought to deposit a six figure check and access to the City’s online banking records.
A Chase employee called the police on Wednesday, April 25, after Mayor Thomas was invited into a conference room and after Mayor Thomas had introduced the two people with him, including the police detective.
The response by the White Plains Police Department was resolved amicably after one of the responding officers recognized the Mount Vernon Police detective.
Mayor Thomas believes that race certainly played a role in the Chase employees calling the police. The two staffers who accompanied Mayor Thomas are black and Hispanic.
“As a Mayor and as a young, well-educated black man living during this turbulent time in society where police are being called on black people for going about everyday life, this is unacceptable,” Mayor Thomas wrote in a letter to Chase CEO Jamie Dimon. “We’ve seen this happen to the two black men at a Starbucks in Philadelphia. We’ve also seen this happen to Oregon Rep. Janelle Bynum while she was campaigning. Now it happened to me.”
Today Mayor Thomas visited the Office of Currency Comptroller to file a racial profiling/redlining complaint. Mayor Thomas was at Chase’s offices at 925 Westchester Ave. in White Plains to invoke existing rights as an authorized account signatory and enforce a recent court order giving him full access to all the City’s financial records.
Supreme Court Justice Susan Cacace recently ordered Mount Vernon Comptroller Deborah Reynolds to stop blocking Mayor Thomas’ access to the critical financial records that allow him to determine how much money the City truly has.
MAYOR RICHARD THOMAS LETTER TO CHASE CHAIRMAN & CEO
April 25, 2019
Jaime Dimon, Chairman & CEO
JP MORGAN CHASE
New York, New York
Re: POLICE CALLED ON MAYOR FOR SEEKING ACCESS & ANSWERS TO HIS CITY’S ACCOUNTS
Dear Chairman Dimon,
I’m writing you with a sense of pride about our City and the 70,000 citizens and 900 employees I represent in the best location in New York. We are in a period of profound political and economic change — and even with that tumult—it is remarkable how much my administration has accomplished in our steadfast dedication to our citizens. However yesterday, I was astounded that none of my administration’s accomplishments mattered to our financial partners—your JP MORGAN CHASE officials —when I visited Chase’s offices in White Plains at 925 Westchester Ave.
I went to Chase’s offices to speak with Ed Muendell, Executive Director Government, and instead of getting some needed facetime, your staff evaded questions and called White Plains Police on me.
At the time your staff called the police, we were in a Chase conference room where we were placed, having already been invited into Chase’s offices. We were subjected to an extensive waiting time for someone to address us, then a lengthy wait for a call back, then a phone conversation and then more waiting on a call back.
After all that, the police were summoned for no reason and no disturbance. As the leader of the City of Mount Vernon, which has substantial accounts with JP Morgan Chase, I expected professional courtesy and cooperation. I was dressed in a suit and tie and accompanied by a staff member and a Mount Vernon Police detective, also dressed in a suit. I introduced both. We were very transparent, polite and kind at all times, asking for simple account information. At no time did my security detail, the detective, brandish a gun or make any threats, as was alleged to my staff member by your Chase employee who relayed that staff was warned of a threat of someone in the building with a gun.
Thank GOD that one of the many responding officers was trained by my security detail. Otherwise, this could have escalated to a tragedy. If this was not so pathetic, it would be funny. But I’m not laughing because someone could have been killed because of a miscommunication. As a Mayor and as a young, well-educated black man living during this turbulent time in society where police are being called on black people for going about everyday life, this is unacceptable.
We’ve seen this happen to two black men at a Starbucks in Philadelphia. We’ve also seen this happen to Oregon Rep. Janelle Bynum while she was campaigning. Now it happened to me. I just wanted you, as a respected and admired executive and leader, to know this. Please address this inappropriate and unnecessary behavior at your office.
Mayor of Mount Vernon, N.Y.