ROCK HILL, SC (WJZY) - A local barber says he's not racist after he reportedly refused service saying, "he doesn't cut black hair," pulling out a gun.
The barber shop is owned and operated by 65-year-old Larry Thomas. He told FOX 46 Charlotte this all happened on Tuesday, May 10. He said a black man came into his store wanting a hair cut but Thomas said "he does not cut black hair" or what some may call ethnic hair.
FOX 46 Charlotte was the only station at the York County Jail earlier Wednesday afternoon as Thomas was released.
Our crews spoke with him one-on-one. He said the man took his refusal to get a haircut as racism and came after him.
There was a bit of a back-and-forth with them, exchanging words but then Thomas said he feared for his safety when the man followed him into a back room.
Thomas said that's when he grabbed his gun and kept it by his side. He said he did not point it at the man - and this was all just a big misunderstanding.
"To this day I don't know how to cut black hair. Black haircutting is an art. It's an art form. And you have to be good in order to do it. And I'm not going to do something that I'm not good at, just to make a buck or two," Thomas explained.
The man who accused Thomas has been in contact with FOX 46 Charlotte, and is not backing down from his claims that the gun was pointed at him.
Girlfriend, who says she's half-black, says her white boyfriend doesn't know how to cut "ethnic hair." pic.twitter.com/GronFI7zAf— David Sentendrey (@DavidFox46) May 11, 2016