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An Atlanta restaurant owner has apologized after a Black man was kicked out for wearing sneakers while others who violated the dress code were not

Business Insider logo Business Insider 11/1/2020 insider@insider.com (Shoshy Ciment)
a plate of food: Irene Jiang / Business Insider © Irene Jiang / Business Insider Irene Jiang / Business Insider
  • An Atlanta, Georgia restaurant has apologized to a Black couple after they were kicked out of the restaurant for not adhering to the dress code. 
  • William Johnson, a Black man, was reportedly asked to leave Umi Sushi in Atlanta, Georgia on Friday, October 23 for wearing Nike Air Force 1 sneakers, which violates the restaurant's dress code.
  • A video that captured the incident showed another woman seated at the restaurant who was wearing tennis shoes.
  • "This is pure racism," Johnson said in the video.
  • Visit Business Insider's homepage for more stories.

The owner of Umi Sushi in Atlanta has apologized for an allegedly discriminatory incident that occurred in the restaurant last week. 

William Johnson, a Black man, was reportedly asked to leave Umi Sushi in Atlanta, Georgia on Friday, October 23 because his Nike Air Force 1 sneakers violated the restaurant's dress code. A video taken by Johnson's wife, Kaylan Colbert, that captured the incident showed another woman, who appeared to be white, seated at the restaurant while wearing tennis shoes. This woman was not asked to leave the restaurant for violating the dress code.

In the video, Johnson points out the woman's sneakers and calls out the restaurant for being inconsistent with the enforcement of the dress code. 

"This is pure racism," he said. "She has on Adidas."

A post shared by Kaylan Colbert ATTORNEY (@thegeorgialawyer)Oct 28, 2020 at 11:28am PDT

Colbert, appeared on Fox 5 after the incident and said that she and her husband felt discriminated against because of their race. 

"If you're going to have rules they should apply to everyone and not just some people," Colbert told Fox 5.

Umi Sushi owner Farshid Arshid told Fox 5 that the situation should have been handled differently. 

"This was completely, 100%, an operational mistake on our end," Arshid told Fox 5. 

Umi Sushi also posted an apology on its website and said it was taking time to "reflect" on its "mistake." 

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