Carmella Davano Cacilie Hughes United Airlines

Carmella Davano, United Airlines’ Employee, Charged With Disorderly Conduct After Calling Cacilie Hughes ‘Shining Monkey’

United Airlines employee, Carmella Davano, continuously yelled racial slurs at actress Cacilie Hughes, while other customers watched. Davano called her a “shining monkey,” according to the woman’s attorneys and court documents.

Hughes was returning home to Houston late February after speaking on women’s empowerment at a Michigan university. It was there she encountered Carmella Davano while she waited for her luggage to arrive. The actress asked Davano for a “refund code,” prompting the woman to go off at United’s terminal inside George Bush Intercontinental Airport and call her a “monkey” and a “shining monkey,” Hughes told the New York Times.

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“I was humiliated,” the actress told the newspaper. “I was crying and I was the only black woman in the area.”

There were two people who witnessed the incident and they said they saw and heard Carmella Davano abuse Hughes, according to Houston police.

Hughes’ attorneys, Benjamin Crump, and Jasmine Rand held a press conference on Tuesday regarding the alleged incident. Cacilie Hughes asked another United Airlines employee to call the police and the request was denied. She ended up calling the authorities herself. Davano was later criminally charged with disorderly conduct for using a racial slur, Crump and Rand said.

United Airlines also issued a statement: “At United, we proudly hold ourselves to the highest standards of professionalism and have zero tolerance for discrimination of any kind. We have withheld the employee from service since the night of the incident pending an internal investigation. Upon conclusion of the investigation, we will take any and all appropriate corrective action up to and including termination.”

Ironically, this isn’t the first time Carmella Davano has gotten in trouble with the law regarding her use of profanity and engaging in obscene behavior. One month prior to this incident, Houston police issued the woman a citation for virtually the same behavior.

United Airlines has been plagued by stories and lawsuits regarding the airline’s treatment of its Black passengers.

The executive leadership is made up of 24 members including 1 Black man, 1 Latino, 5 women (no women of color), and the rest white men. Creating an environment where diversity and differences are appreciated starts at the top. It looks like United Airlines has some work to do.

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  1. The Simple Answer for ALL People of Color – QUIT FLYING UNITED AIRLINES; PERIOD FULL STOP!! – They might not understand Brown but they sure get GREEN!! – As a people we have to stop begging people to take our money. If you can’t treat us with the God Given respect we deserve then you don’t get to enrich yourselves with our dollars!!!!!!

  2. These people have become so emboldened since the Cheeto-in-Chief took office. It’s sad to say, but it feels like we are going back in time, a time when black people were treated atrociously and had very little or no rights. I just hope and pray things will get better once that orange fool is out of the White House. But maybe I’m naïve and it’s going to get worse before it gets better.

  3. David Andersen

    Not surprising from United Airlines. I have never received such terrible customer service on a consistent basis from any company…..hands down. I would never use them by choice. This is just another disgusting example of how most of their employees treat people. This is just so sad. You feel helpless, and I can’t imagine how much this must have amplified it for her being the only black person there. I was unfortunate enough to experience their wrath a week ago, but this story is just horrific.

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