Black USPS carrier 'mistakenly' stopped by San Rafael police believes he was pulled over for color of his skin

Police were looking for a stolen white Chevy Impala. The person who reported the vehicle stolen said he believed the suspect was armed. The man police stopped was driving a white Chevy Malibu, the wrong car.
SAN RAFAEL, Calif. (KGO) -- A US postal service employee has filed a lawsuit against the San Rafael Police Department in connection with a wrongful stop. He says he was stopped for "driving while Black." The Police Department Chief says, the department "made a mistake."

San Rafael Police shared body camera video in September of the traffic stop that occurred August 7.

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US Postal Service mail carrier Karl Bracy was the driver.

Police were looking for a stolen white Chevy Impala with black wheels and tinted windows. The person who reported the vehicle stolen said he believed the suspect was armed.

Bracy was driving a white Chevy Malibu, the wrong car.

"I never had a gun pulled out on me, but to have several guns is devastating to me," said Bracy during a press conference to announce the lawsuit on Thursday.

San Rafeal Police Chief Diana Bishop in a video released in September said, "We made a mistake. This kind of mistake is rare, but it happens."

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The person who reported the vehicle stolen didn't know his license plate.

Attorney John Burris is now representing Bracy in a lawsuit filed against the police department. Burris says the officers on dispatch should have found out more information about who they were looking for before stopping Bracy.

"It's very disturbing because all you really had was a Black man in a car," said Burris.

San Rafael's Police Chief says the vehicle's tinted windows prevented police from seeing Mr. Bracy's ethnicity until after he got out of his car.

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"When we were 3/4 of the way through getting you out of the car it started coming out that there were some stickers on the side and it became pretty apparent that it probably wasn't a match, so I apologize for the day," said an officer to Bracy in the body camera video.

"No problem man," Bracy responds.

"I really think I got out of there because I had the mailman uniform on. I was just another Black man trying to go home from work," said Bracy during Thursday's press conference.

Police Chief Bishop said she also called Bracy to apologize.

"I know that neither my words nor the words of the officers will erase this event or the impact it had on the driver," said Bishop.

"This is a scar that I don't think will ever go away," said Bracy.
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