Remember those reports in the press that the police had been notified of two youngish black men with backpacks? Give the call recording a listen. Gates's neighbor refers to "gentlemen" with what looks like suitcases. She raises the prospect that the men seen at the door might live there. She makes no reference to their race.
Now, we have not yet been given recordings of the dispatcher's call that Sgt. Crowley was responding to, but this makes it abundantly clear that the Cambridge Police went into this situation with the knowledge that they might be dealing with the lawful residents of the property.
Also of great interest, at least to me. This passage from Sgt. Crowley's report:
"As I reached the door, a female voice called out to me. I turned and looked in the direction of the voice and observed a white female, later identified as Lucia Whalen. Whalen, who was standing on the sidewalk in front of the residence, held a wireless telephone in her hand and told me it was she who called. She went on to tell me that she observed what appeared to be two black males with backpacks on the porch of ___ Ware Street."
How do we account for the apparent difference between what we hear Ms. Whalen say on the 911 call and what Sgt. Crowley reports she told him?
Well, CNN reports that Whalen's attorney has contradicted Crowley's report absolutely. Here's the link. And here's the take-away quote: "Let me be clear. She never had a conversation with Sgt. Crowley at the scene."