‘SNL’ former Jay Pharoah said cops pulled guns while he was exercising, knelt on his neck


Comedian Jay Pharaoh recalled Friday how Los Angeles police held him at gunpoint, knocked him to the ground and knelt on his neck while handcuffing him during a recent fake detention.

Cops let the former “Saturday Night Live” alumnus leave after discovering it was an identity error, Pharaoh said in a video he shared on Instagram containing what appeared to be images of the incident.

“It wasn’t as long as George Floyd, but I know what it feels like,” Pharaoh said of how an officer held him. Floyd, a black man, died last month after a white Minneapolis police officer knelt on his neck for nearly 9 minutes. His death sparked nationwide anti-racism protests.

“I could easily have been an Ahmaud Arbery or a George Floyd,” admitted Pharaoh, who left SNL in 2016.

“And I’m not and I can tell my story,” he added, urging young black people to “learn about the laws” to “understand what the cops are telling you, so if they’re trying to return anything to you,” they have “the knowledge and the power to overturn that.” The incident occurred in April, “about a week” before images of the death of Ahmaud Arbery, Pharaoh said.

Watch Pharaoh’s video here:

“The person in the Instagram post was arrested as a possible suspect in a crime,” a Los Angeles police spokesman told ABC Eyewitness News.  It was determined that he was the wrong suspect and he was released. The incident is under investigation.

“SNL” past and present stars showed their solidarity with Pharaoh in the comments section of his post:


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