Woman who reported real estate investor as trespasser: 'nothing racist about it'

Officers defend Memphis real estate investor after woman reports him as trespasser
Published: May. 16, 2018 at 1:12 AM CDT|Updated: May. 16, 2018 at 12:29 PM CDT
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MEMPHIS, TN (WMC) - A video of a white Memphis woman who called police on a black real estate investor and reported him as a trespasser has gone viral online.

However, the ending to this story is much different from similar controversial cases that have sparked outrage across the country.

Michael Hayes, a real estate investor, said he likes to put videos of his adventures in real estate investing on YouTube.

However, he said what happened in his latest venture was a new experience that left him unsettled but very pleased with the professional way Memphis Police Department handled it.

"I was at a house I had under contract to do an inspection, get some pictures," Hayes said.

On May 5, Hayes was at a house checking it out to see if he wanted to buy it. He said it's something he does with his company Hayes Investment Deals.

Hayes was pulling boards off of the windows when a next-door neighbor came outside and asked what he was doing, something he understood.

"I told her what I was doing there, showed her my sign in the front yard," Hayes said. "Told her I had the paperwork."

The neighbor, Tiffany Albert, said Hayes didn't show her the paperwork. She called the police, which Hayes noted it in his video.

"For whatever reason, she called the police," Hayes said.

Albert didn't want Hayes at the house.

"She was saying things like I have no right to be there," Hayes said. "What am I doing in the neighborhood. Get your sign and go."

Albert said the house had people using drugs in it and other unsavory activities before the city finally boarded it up. She did not want the boards removed.

"It took us so long to get these two houses boarded up," Albert said.

Two officers showed up, got information from Hayes, and realized he had legitimate business at the house.

Officers talked with Albert, who was still not happy about Hayes' presence.

"We're going to let him do his job," the officers said.

"I know, hurry up," Albert said.

Hayes said the Memphis police officers handled the situation in a very professional manner and stayed at the scene while he did his work.

"Understand what's going on now in America with people calling the police on people for no reason," Hayes said. "I understand that could have went completely different way. When they came out there they made me feel safe."

Albert said Hayes made her look like a racist on the video.

"I'm Spanish," Albert said. "My boyfriend is black. It's nothing racist about it."

Hayes said he is not yet sure if he will invest in the house. Albert said it would be great if the house was renovated.

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