When Craig Caldwell wanted to sublet a space to a fellow restaurant owner, his landlord turned the deal down. He was so shocked at the reason she gave that he used his cell phone to record two conversations with her.
His landlord said, find an “American person,” according to the recordings, which have been shared exclusively with KUNC.
The recordings, which are part of a discrimination lawsuit, add to rising number of incidents and complaints about racism, bigotry, hatred and other bias across Colorado in the last two years — and a national trend where events are captured by cell phones.
Caldwell, who runs White Fence Farms, a Denver-area chicken restaurant, recorded his landlord, Katina Gatchis, in December at the liquor store she runs in Capitol Hill.
Caldwell asked Gatchis: “You need an American person?”
“American person, I need,” Gatchis replied, “good like you and me.”
When Caldwell closed a corner store version of White Fence Farm at 9th Avenue and Corona Street in Denver, he found a team to take over in a sublet — the Khans, who own Curry N Kebob in Boulder. They’re Muslim and of Bangladeshi descent.