Yale honors Black 9-year-old girl after neighbor calls the cops on her

A nine-year-old Black girl whose neighbor called the police on her while she was catching lantern flies was honored by the Yale School of Public Health earlier this month, The Guardian reports.

Bobbi Wilson’s efforts to rid Caldwell, New Jersey, of the spotted lanternfly were honored by the school, which also thanked her for bestowing her personal collection of lanternflies to Yale’s Peabody Museum listing Wilson as the donating scientist.

“Yale doesn’t normally do anything like this,” assistant professor Ijeoma Opara said. “This is something unique to Bobbi.”

Wilson made news headlines when a neighbor called the police on her as she used a homemade repellant spray of water, dish soap and apple cider vinegar to kill spotted lanternflies that were feeding on trees by her house.

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“There’s a little Black woman walking, spraying stuff on the sidewalks and trees,” the caller told police, according to CNN. “I don’t know what the hell she’s doing. Scares me, though.”

The caller later reportedly apologized to Bobbi’s mother.

From The Guardian: "After Opara saw national news coverage of the police being called on Bobbi, Yale officials said, she contacted Joseph and invited her to bring Bobbi as well as her older sister, 13-year-old Hayden, to meet Black women who were pursuing successful careers as scientists. Hayden’s appearance at a local government meeting about Bobbi’s police encounter was a large reason why the national media paid attention to the case."

Read the full report over at The Guardian.

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