White woman fired after barring man from building
"TO BE A black man in America, and come home."
A young black man who was blocked by a female neighbour from entering his own apartment building on the weekend, has expressed his disappointment in the situation.
D'Arreion Toles said he was coming home from work when neighbour, Hilary Brooke Thornton, physically blocked him from entering the luxury block in the Missouri city.
Mr Toles posted a three-part video on his Facebook page, which has now gone viral, showing the woman standing in the doorway of the building demanding he show her his key and tell her his unit number.
Alongside his posted videos, he wrote: "Woman tries to stop me from coming into my building because she feels insecure, Downtown St. Louis luxury loft, because she don't feel that I belong, never really thought this would happen to me, but it did!
"I was shocked this is America in 2018!"
Ms Thornton was fired from her job as a luxury realtor after the video provoked outrage.
The 32-year-old lives in the same block as Mr Toles, but her employer does not manage the property.
In the footage shot my Mr Toles on his phone, the woman claimed to have felt "uncomfortable" as she proceeded to hound the young man with questions on why he was at the building which has a pool and spa, plus its own wine bar and entertainment deck.
"I am uncomfortable," she said.
"Okay, you can be uncomfortable, that's your discretion," Mr Toles responded. "You're uncomfortable because you're you."
While holding a glittery phone and a dog lead and placing her arm across the door, Ms Thornton was said to have replied, "I'm not touching you at all, I'm not doing anything other than letting my dog go to the bathroom."
"Okay, I live here and you're blocking the door," Mr Toles responded.
During the first video, Ms Thornton continued to demand for proof that her neighbour lived there.
"You just walked off the street and don't have a keypad. You pushed your way in," she told him.
"I don't need to tell you that," Mr Toles said. "Ma'am, you are not security, you are not the property manager …"
He only disclosed living on the fourth floor and she is heard repeatedly saying "no" while trying to stand in from of the open door.
She complained about the phone being in her face and the man responded, "well I don't like the fact you are blocking me from where I pay to live."
As he finally pushed passed her she shouted "are you kidding me?" and followed him as he headed to an elevator, asking again to see his key fob.
She was then seen getting in the lift with him and says as they ride in the elevator "no, I want to see who you are going to see".
"Who are you going up to the fourth floor to see? No I want to know who you are going to see," she said.
"I would like to know who your friends are and why you are here and if you do live here I want to meet you because you are a neighbour."
He responded, "well you didn't start off on a good note" as he exited the elevator.
After opening the door to his unit, she stood outside with her dog and said: "Hi, what is your name?"
The shocked man simply responded: "Ma'am, don't ever do that again, you look stupid, and my name is Mr Toles" as he shut the door on her.
The third video showed him leaving his apartment and walking through the building, with the woman continuing to follow him saying: "I would like to introduce myself."
In the video, Mr Toles was heard telling his neighbour he didn't want to speak to her, and demanding she stop following him.
"I am going to call the cops for harassment, that's my next step" he said before the video ended.
However, according to his Facebook post, the woman had already called the police.
"Then 30 mins later police knock on my door, because she called! I was shocked this is America in 2018!"
The video has been shared more than 136,600 times and has clocked 64,000 likes.
Ms Thornton was named as the woman in the video by social media users and confirmed by her former partner, Brandon Mueller, who posted on his Facebook page.
According to the New York Times, the company said in a statement it had reviewed the video and fired her.
"The Tribeca-STL family is a minority-owned company that consists of employees and residents from many racial backgrounds," officials from her St Louis employer said in a statement. "We are proud of this fact and do not and never will stand for racism or racial profiling at our company."
The New York Times reportedly reached out to the woman but she had not responded.
The Metropolitan Police Department in St Louis said in an email on Monday that it responded to a 911 call that "was made because the caller did not know if the male subject was a tenant", the publication reported.
In an interview on Sunday, Mr Toles said he pulled out his phone to record the encounter "because I didn't feel safe in the situation".
He added: "At the end of the day, why would she call the police on me? I just walked in and went to my house."
In a separate Facebook post Mr Toles thanked people for their love and support, saying he would turn "this negative into a positive future for the world I influence."
"Don't bash the women just send her positive waves of energy, and let's be great people this our world and this message is to everyone of all ages/ races/ colours/!" he wrote.
"We only get one life so let's make the most of it & be great, no time for negativity!"
According to his social media, Mr Toles is the CEO and owner at Global Wealth Insights Corp and studied at College of DuPage.