Source: ROBYN BECK / Getty

A high school class assignment aimed to examine sociology and race netted the results the teacher was hoping for when a student was grabbed by a stranger inside the Cherry Creek Mall and accused of stealing.

As reported by, 17-year-old Channing Cowan was at the mall with three classmates from his psychology class at Centaurus High School in Lafayette, asking strangers to borrow cell phones. They wanted to see how people would react and whether skin color would impact their response.

While conducting the experiment, Cowan was manhandled by a white male who accused him of stealing a woman’s wallet. The incident was captured on camera.

“He actually grabbed me and threatened to whoop my you know what if I didn’t give his wallet back,” said Cowan.

“He was grabbing him and touching him and pulling on him,” explained Channing’s mother, Alice Cowan.

Channing didn’t have the woman’s wallet, as she had left it inside a store. Once she realized her mistake, she quickly apologized. But the man who laid hands on the teen walked away from the scene without apologizing.

The student and his parents believe the man only accused their son of theft because of his skin color.

“My heart didn’t break because I know it happens all the time, but it was so scary for me because I wasn’t there. I know he’s a senior, but at the same time he’s my baby,” said Alice Cowan. “It disturbs me. This is stuff I’ve dealt with a lot,” added Michael.

The Cowans would now like to speak with the “racist” man.

“I want to know why,” said Alice.

“What if the roles were reversed and I was putting my hands on your child? How would you feel?” added the boy’s father, Michael.

They hope video of the incident will remind all who watch it of many American’s love affair with racism.

“Lately it just seems like things have gone so far back. We’ve gone backward instead of forward. People just feel like they can say and do whatever they want to do,” said Alice.



Article Courtesy of EURweb

Video Courtesy of KDVR-TV Denver and EURweb

First Picture Courtesy of Anadolu Agency and Getty Images

Second Picture Courtesy of Robyn Beck and Getty Images

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