Taurean Nesmith, a 21-year-old African-American student at Benedict College in Columbia, had repeatedly been stopped and searched by a particular campus police officer. One day, as Nesmith and his friends left their college apartment building to get into their cars, the officer approached Nesmith’s friend, and asked him for identification. Nesmith said to another friend that the officer was stopping them because of their race. The officer then asked Nesmith for identification. Nesmith asked why he needed to see it, and questioned the officer’s practices. He was arrested and charged with disturbing schools and disorderly conduct. The charges were later dropped.