The alleged fare-dodger could be seen vehemently clinging on metal handrails, as two men in uniform ferociously battle to get him out of the suburban S-Bahn train, headed to Munich city center from the airport.
While one of the inspectors tries to remove the man’s hands from the handrails, another can be seen grabbing the man’s neck as he leans back towards the doors. As the scene unfolds, a woman filming the struggle tells the inspectors: “It’s absolutely not OK what you’re doing, the guy didn’t do anything to you.”
“You should be ashamed of yourself, this is racism what you’re doing,” she can be heard saying. “Why are you doing this? He paid.” The woman continues filming until someone seemingly tries to stop her.
The two controllers eventually manage to get the man out on the platform and bring him to the ground, pressing his face against the asphalt, as the woman yells that the men in uniform were doing it “because he’s black.”
He appeared to have no valid ticket as the inspectors came up to him during the check. They then asked him to show an ID card and pay a €60 fine ($68), according to the witness who filmed the incident and later described it to HuffingtonPost.de.
The man, however, only had €9 in cash, which he reportedly needed for food. The inspectors collected the €9, saying he still owed the rest.
Deutsche Bahn, the company operating trains in Germany, said it was “unusual to receive only partial payments,” commenting on the incident later.
The company also stated that the man was acting aggressively and refused to leave the carriage, prompting the inspectors to apply physical force. The witness, however, described the man as having remained calm.
The incident was reported to the police due to the conflicting accounts. Although it was not clear whether the man’s skin color played any role, the Deutsche Bahn admitted there had been racist incidents in the past.
The video uploaded by the witness on her Facebook page has so far garnered more than 750,000 views.
“This is what happens if you are caught without a ticket on the S-Bahn. Being black didn’t help either, on the contrary!” reads the caption to Natalija Miletic’s post. With nearly 4,000 comments under it, the post sparked outrage, with some writing it had nothing to do with racism and others suggesting the man should have complied with the inspectors, since he did not pay.