Have you ever put your best foot forward for a person you consider your brother or sister, using your own energy, time, and hard-earned money, from your heart - only for said person to use it against you and land you in horrible trouble? Basically, have you ever been punished for doing a good thing?
Well, that’s exactly what happened early one evening around March 2019. Two friends, both East African men, did a stranger a great favor - a West African woman who met them in a casino in Minneapolis, struck up a conversation about basketball with them and proceeded to ask for money to eat. They would find out later that she would try to defame them and almost regret ever being hospitable to a stranger.
She informed them that she had come by bus, thought they were good company, wanted to gamble and play with them and asked if she could join them with all normalcy. The men obliged. Being culturally raised never to turn back a person with real need, both men notably perceived that she had a cast on her leg.
This ended up not only with them doing buffet (which they all ate together) and forking out gambling money for her. They also spent time shooting arcade basketball, laughing about silly jokes and dancing to the overhead casino music together. Many snippets of these activities were recorded by both men and uploaded as video clips and social media timelines on their personal cellphones from time to time. (The casino cameras also will, if viewed, show beyond doubt this to be the case).
Finally, when the woman figured that she couldn’t get any more gambling money from the two men anymore, she excused herself and left the two men still in the casino, who still had no clue of her bizarre intentions. However, after she left, she kept calling them over and over (since they had all exchanged numbers), only for the two men to completely miss her repeated calls. In addition, both men attest that the last calls she made to both their cellphones, which the men again missed, were around 9:49pm that evening, a few minutes before a whole different abnormal saga began.
Suddenly before 10pm, casino security approached the two men, claimed that a “certain mentally challenged woman” reported that they had tried to assault her in a casino hotel room, and proceeded to detain them and call law enforcement. The men thought it was a terrible joke!
You can imagine the horror on the two men’s faces as they waited for police to arrive, both having a clue amounting to zero about what was happening to them at that moment. It was only after law enforcement officers detained and questioned them that it dawned on them. That this must have been the motive of the woman they had just met and willingly entertained; she must have left in anger and disappointment from having no more access to their money, so she must have decided to vindictively return an honest turn.
The two men’s hearts sank.
Subsequently, according to the two men, police arrived and immediately proceeded to make the situation worse - they “forcefully” confiscated the men’s cellphones immediately after taking their statement. Forcefully because the men don’t recall the officers asking for permission to take their phones away as investigative evidence; all they felt was intimidated and coerced by the threat of “prison time if they didn’t cooperate”.
Their confusion was confirmed when afterwards they both realized that the officers had created anxiety by separating and outright pitting them against one another to achieve this goal (“you should give us your cellphone because your friend has too”). The men claim the police in addition stated that the woman had told them “the men assaulted her”, and asked both men other bizarre questions. Having no idea why they were being asked about such things at the moment, they would find out the officers’ clandestine intentions soon enough!
This is obvious in the fact that all the evidence (both the men’s confiscated cellphones and the casino security footage) will show that all interactions among them were nothing other than normal. In fact the whole thing seems like a flat out setup of the two men and leads to further confusion because around 9:40pm, just a few minutes right before casino security personnel approached the two men and falsely charged them, they had both just missed the woman’s call.
Ultimately, the farce becomes clearer when also in reality, even after taking their statements, their buffet and arcade game times were mysteriously not included anywhere in the police report!
Only their supposed assault, which police lazily described as they “met the woman, took her to a hotel room, assaulted the woman, left the room” (although they did not confiscate any room key/card from the men’s persons) - was the one interaction the officers felt was important.
Thereby in the innocent men’s eyes the officers unconstitutionally chose to trample their inalienable rights of free speech and expression by mis-recording their statement through omission of facts, lack of proper investigative protocol and generally lack of professional conduct as oath holders of the constitution, upholders of the law and public servants of the people.
Knowing the gravity of such a charge, the men attest that police have committed a purposeful falsification of evidence with the intention to boost the woman’s narrative and discourage alternative testimonies. The men feel that the proof of all this is in accessing the casino footage which, if the footage shows the incident as narrated by the men, and it will unless tampered with, would not only show beyond reasonable doubt that the woman in question had no signs of mental incompetence, and apart from the cast on her leg, was completely coherent and agreeable.
This in turn would expressly prove their innocence.
In what the men consider a “desperate unconstitutional move to sway public opinion” way before their court appearance, authorities purportedly also went ahead and aided in the publishing a newspaper article that did more to insinuate the two friends’ guilt than present a newsworthy incident for what it was. In hindsight, this is not too different from Donald Trump’s $80,000 full-page NY Times article demonizing the innocent Central Park Five of 1989, which is another reason why the men feel targeted and racially profiled by an unjust and highly contemptuous legal system toward people of color.
Both men, still friends, now stand falsely accused of bizarre, unfounded charges and desperately need justice on their side in order to avoid the trap they have been set up in. The men feel strongly that had they been Caucasian, none of this would be happening - and inasmuch as that is so unfortunate, it is not besides the point.
However, they insist that nothing will change their innocence - not a even a false charge, corrupt police or intimidating sentence. They attest that they are and will always be innocent, and have evidence to prove it. For these two men to receive justice, they have solicited a competent attorney who requires just $30,000 to squash this case and permanently return to them their freedom - which injustice is trying so hard to wrench away.
We are are not merely asking for your financial help with money; we are asking you and I, the world, for justice one innocent victim at a time. There’s no hate or resentment invoked; just two men’s desperate cry for help from all who are touched and understand the immediate need for fairness and positive outcomes for all involved, particularly the woman who has caused them so much loss.
Thank you so much for your time. Please rest assured knowing that any contributions from you are completely appreciated and will only be used for the purpose outlined above - attorney & court fees for the men, strictly according to GoFundMe rules and regulations.
Also please feel free to SHARE SHARE SHARE! We are not ashamed of the truth and yet we are always positive that as long as we all remember to put ourselves in each other’s shoes and work together from time to time, Truth and Justice will prevail.