Denzel Washington played the role of a “very good Samaritan” in a viral video when he helped a homeless black man in Los Angeles during a meeting with police who have made sharp contrasts to George Floyd’s death in Minneapolis.
The 65-year-old “Equalizer” star “saw a riot in West Hollywood with cops and an unarmed homeless man,” former NBA player Rex Chapman wrote on Twitter along a video of the meeting according to USA Today.
“He got out of his car and acted as a barrier between the man and the police – which helped spread a tense situation. This man was arrested for sure, “he added in the post Thursday.
In another video posted by user @MoPhoPix, an LA police officer explains how Washington, wearing a mask and wearing a black hat, gray T-shirt and black shorts, helped during the incident.
“Denzel drove past, saw the individual on the road and was worried about his safety,” the police officer says in the pictures.
“We intervened, talked to the individual and decided he didn’t want to hurt himself or anyone, and he was on his way and Denzel left,” the official said.
“Denzel gave him a mask to protect himself against the environment and that was good. So Denzel helped us today, he says, adding that Washington puts extra masks in the man’s pocket.
The actor was a “very good Samaritan”, he adds.
“Thus, a meeting with police officers will end,” wrote @MoPhoPix, an obvious reference to George Floyd’s death while in police custody in Minneapolis.
A LAPD spokesman declined to comment to USA Today about the incident, which the news release said took place on May 21.
As of Friday morning, the video had 3.7 million views.
“I saw Denzel Washington trending and getting scared, but it was ONLY because he’s out and about as a hero and saved a life while wearing his dust mask,” user @mmpadellan wrote on Twitter. “My husband!”
Many social media users contrasted the incident with Floyd’s case, which has led to violent protests following his death while being arrested by police.
“DenzelWashington did what anyone would do in that kind of situation. I would like to know that the people who recorded #GeorgeFloyd or those around him might have felt confident enough to do the same,” @BryonnaJones said on Twitter.
“Can Denzel Washington Go to Minnesota and Teach a Class?” added @ joshuafett75.
“Denzel Washington has been my favorite actor for a while now,” @WesKCrochet said. “What he did for the homeless man only reinforced it.”