Community members rally after man detained trying to deposit check

Published: Sep. 22, 2017 at 4:32 PM CDT
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Friday, members of the community came together after Sattar Ali was detained while trying to deposit a check at Emprise Bank.

According to the bank, they were unable to verify the legitimacy of the check Ali received after selling property.

The Chairman of Emprise has release a statement on the incident.

Bank Chairman Matthew Michealis says the bank is sorry for the incident that occurred on Sept. 6 when a teller called 911 after saying Sattar Ali was trying to deposit a fraudulent $150,000 check.

Officers arrived on the scene. Ali and his family were all taken downtown to the police department's investigations division. About 48 minutes later, detectives verified the legitimacy of the check after making additional calls.

In his statement, Michaelis says the bank will "conduct a complete review of the incident" with all parties involved. He says Emprise Bank staff will now participate in sensitivity training.

"At Emprise, we believe that what we do and say is a reflection of who we are. We do not tolerate discrimination of any kind," said Michaelis in the statement.

Wichita Police Chief Gordon Ramsay also offered an apology on behalf of the Wichita Police Department.

He too said, “Even though WPD Officers followed policy, we feel bad for what happened in the course of the investigation."

You can read Matthew Michaelis' entire statement below:
Emprise Bank has been in my family since 1965 with the goal of creating opportunities for its customers and the communities we serve. For over 50 years, we have been guided by our values, which include integrity, loyalty, and kindness. We are sorry for the events of September 6, 2017, and for the pain the traumatic experience caused for our customer and his family. On that day, the Ali family was detained after attempting to deposit a check that was ultimately determined to be valid. This is an outcome that no one involved wanted. We want to reiterate our sincere apology for the role that Emprise played in this matter. My team and I have communicated with the Ali family, law enforcement, our customers, our employees, and members of the community over the last two weeks. We will continue to listen and learn, and we will be better as a result. Emprise will conduct a complete review of the incident -- working with all parties involved -- to identify procedure changes and staff training that could have avoided this unnecessary outcome. Additionally, all Emprise Bank staff will participate in sensitivity training. At Emprise, we believe that what we do and say is a reflection of who we are. We do not tolerate discrimination of any kind. I am grateful for the dialogue that this incident has prompted, and am committed to ensuring that this becomes a learning opportunity for Emprise. Sincerely, Matthew A. Michaelis Chairman Emprise Bank

Members of the Council of American-Islamic Relations are still looking for answers while at today's rally civil rights attorney and 4th congressional district candidate James Thompson had the following statement on the incident "I was appalled and I felt badly that the family moved here and that was the welcome that they got from our community.”

Wichita police say the bank called 9-1-1 saying it couldn't verify the check and thought it was fake and Emprise Bank says there was a concern with the routing number and name.

Officers from the Wichita Police Department will have implicit-bias training October 1st, but that is not related to the incident.