Yale Student Calls Police on Fellow Black Peer


Geraldo Salcedo, Reporter

Sarah Braasch, a student attending Yale University, called the police on her fellow black peer, Lolade Siyonbola, who had been sleeping in the dorm’s common area. The police arrived at Yale’s Hall of Graduates, where they interrogated Siyonbola as to why she had been in the room and Siyonbola recorded the entire encounter and live-streamed to Facebook Live.

The incident had occurred after Braasch found Siyonbola asleep on the common area’s couch and woke her up to inform her that the police were on their way. Siyonbola reports that she decided to take a nap after hours of writing a report for her Master’s program. Once awakened by Braasch, Siyonbola confronted her peer and waited for authorities.

“I deserve to be here. I pay tuition like everybody else. I am not going to justify my existence.” Siyonbola told police after they detained her to verify her identity.

Eventually, the police were able to match her name with Yale’s databases and released her. However, other students of color have reported that this is not Braasch’s first incident where she called the police on a black student. About three months ago, she called the police on a student that was sitting in the dorm’s stairwell.

Yale University stated that they had “admonished” Braasch and released a statement that Siyonbola had every right to be there.

This incident has raised outrage, especially within the Black community, as it represents a microaggression that adds to the portrayal of black people as criminals and has been more frequent in the media recently.