Bank Apologizes To Black Panther’s Ryan Coogler For Thinking He Was A Robber

“This situation should never have happened.”

'Black Panther' director Ryan Coogler in 2018.
The Washington Post/Getty Images

Bank of America has apologized to Black Panther director Ryan Coogler after he was wrongly targeted as a bank robbery suspect and briefly detained by officers. The incident took place in January at an Atlanta branch, according to a police report TMZ obtained on March 9, and the Atlanta Police Department has since stated that Coogler’s detention was a case of mistaken identity. “We deeply regret that this incident occurred,” Bank of America said in a statement to The Hollywood Reporter. “It never should have happened and we have apologized to Mr. Coogler.”

As per the police report, Coogler went to withdraw cash from his bank account and handed the teller a note, which was also posted by TMZ, that read, “I would like to withdraw $12,000 cash from my checking account. Please do the money count somewhere else. I’d like to be discreet.” This caused the unnamed female bank teller be suspicious. “The bank teller then received an alert notification from Mr. Coogler’s account and quickly advised her manager that suspect # 3 [Coogler] is attempting to rob the bank,” the report states. “911 was alerted and responded.”

Ryan Coogler with the late Chadwick Boseman in February 2018.Anadolu Agency/Getty Images

As police arrived at the scene, they spotted two people in a Lexus SUV who were waiting for Coogler to complete his bank transaction and confirmed his physical description to cops, officially making him a suspect at this point. Coogler was then handcuffed and taken by two officers, while his companions were put in the back of a patrol car.

However, before they even reached a police station, officers investigated who the director was and realized he had no intention to commit robbery. “It was determined later by Sgt. Fernandez that the incident is a mistake by Bank Of America and that Mr. Coogler was never in the wrong,” the report reads. Everyone was then let go, and the bank personally apologized.

“This situation should never have happened,” Coogler told THR in a statement. “However, Bank of America worked with me and addressed it to my satisfaction and we have moved on.” The report also notes that Coogler requested the name as well as the badge number for all the officers who came to the scene. It’s not known if he plans to take action with this information.

Coogler has spent a lot of time in Atlanta in recent months while filming Black Panther 2: Wakanda Forever, which is scheduled to premiere on Nov. 11, 2022.