A mother and her daughter had a very bad experience taking the plane. The flight attendants thought that, since they do not have the same color of skin, the mother was guilty of child trafficking.
Mary MacCarthy, 42, and her daughter Moira, 10, flew on October 22 from Los Angeles. This white mom and her black daughter were due to travel to Denver to attend the funeral of Michael, the American’s brother, People reports . He was a father figure to his niece, and his abrupt death at 46 greatly shocked his family. So it was in this state of mind that mother and daughter boarded a Southwest Airlines aircraft.
Mother and daughter greeted by police on landing
When boarding, Mary and Moira cannot find seats side by side. The mother will therefore ask the flight attendants if it is possible to move them: “We are seeing for a funeral, my daughter is only 10 years old,” she told them. To which he was told to ask people to come. The rest of the flight goes well, until the moment of landing.
At Denver airport, Mary and Moira are greeted on the tarmac by two police officers. “I was confronted by two armed policemen. One of them started talking to me, the other to my daughter. I was really upset because they knew our names,” the mother tells People . Worried, she imagines that this welcome is due to the fact that another member of the family has died suddenly, and that the police are there to inform them.
Instead, the officer speaking to Mary MacCarthy tells her: “We are speaking with you because you and your daughter have been reported for suspicious behavior.” “At that moment I clicked that told me that we must have been profiled. I have been raising this girl for 10 years, she is my biological daughter, and I knew this kind of thing could happen,” recalls the mother.
The mother accused of child trafficking
According to police, the airline reported the mother and daughter because of “suspicious” behavior, namely that they were the last people to board and asked passengers to move so they could be. sitting together, which the flight attendants had just told them to do … According to Mary, this would never have happened if her daughter was white, too: “I was upset because I was sure we had been profiled racially “ . Still, after three minutes of discussion, she was able to leave with her daughter.
Only ten days later, she received a call from Denver Police explaining that they were continuing their investigation into whether she might be a child trafficker. In addition to what has been described above, she learns that an employee reported that “the mother and daughter did not speak during the flight” and that Mary MacCarthy “did not authorize her daughter. to speak to the flight crew “. Completely shocked by these allegations, the mom decided to sue the airline and the police.
“I want Southwest Airlines and Denver Police to be held accountable for what is undoubtedly racial profiling of a 10 year old black girl who was already in pain because it was the worst day of her life. An incident like this causes a scar in the child’s life , ” says Mary MacCarthy. According to her, Moira is traumatized by what happened and sees a child psychologist .