#PermitPatty Is Unafraid to Call the Police Even on Eight-Year-Olds

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Eight-Year-Old Jourdan did not expect someone to call the police on her much less for selling water bottles per her mother’s supervision. Confronted only after 15 minutes of standing outside by the CEO of a medical marijuana company, Allison Ettel, Jourdan was asked if she had a permit for selling water and if not, she would call the police.

It quickly escalated as the mother, Erin Austin, told her to leave her child alone, which eventually led to Ettel “pretending” to call the police but actually contacting the building’s security guard. An action the woman said was only done to find out what documents were needed in order to sell water on the streets.

After the mother filmed and posted a 15-second recording of “PermitPatty” crouching behind a wall to avoid being recorded while telling the “police” about someone illegally selling water without a permit. The video was not that well received by viewers, as they thought the woman was actually calling the police and announced the blatant racial discrimination in the woman’s actions of approaching the mother and child in an aggressive manner.

“An 8-year-old selling water in front of her apartment building where she’s lived her whole life is NOT a reason to call the police,” Austin posted on Instagram after the incident.

Ettel declared that the reason for the interaction was not because of racial discrimination of any kind but because of “stress” related to the girl and mother shouting out under her window, “cold water, two dollars!” Ettel claimed that it was a mistake. She justified her actions by claiming her report was in response to the duo screaming outside her house while she was trying to work in a room with an open window since she no air conditioner.

When questioned, the young girl showed no signs of stopping her sell.

Jourdan’s mother had recently lost her job and, in an effort to teach her daughter about entrepreneurship, encouraged her to try and raise money for a family trip to Disneyland. However, after the video went viral, Jourdan no longer had to sell anything since a stranger decided to pay for Disneyland tickets for the entire family after hearing about what happened.

Although upset, viewers could not help but remember a similar incident along the lines of “BBQ Becky,” who called the police on a group of black men cooking in Oakland Park.

Austin, astounded at the animosity and situation that came out of the surprise encounter, told Inside Edition, “What kind of monster calls the cops on a little girl? Whether she’s black, brown, orange, yellow, purple.”

Written by Brielle R. Buford
Edited by Jeanette Smith and Cathy Milne


BBC NEWS: Permit Patty: Woman ‘calls police’ on eight-year-old for selling water
USA TODAY: Today’s talker: Permit laws can sanction harassment of 8-year-olds
CBS NEWS: Outcry after woman calls police on little girl selling water
CNN: Internet mocks ‘Permit Patty’ after woman threatens to call police about a black girl selling bottled water
SFGATE: Woman confronts SF 8-year-old, and her mother’s video goes viral
INSIDE EDITION: ‘Permit Patty’ Uproar: Good Samaritan Offers to Pay for 8-Year-Old’s Trip to Disneyland

Top and Featured Image Courtesy of Liz Henry’s Flickr Page – Creative Commons License


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