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Ving Rhames is known for his standout role as Luther in the Mission: Impossible films. As the only other actor besides Tom Cruise to appear in every installment of the series since the first movie debuted in 1996, Rhames is a beloved fixture to the franchise -- particularly as the one guy in the crew who tends to react appropriately to the crazy, death-defying, life-risking antics of Cruise's Ethan Hunt (even when Luther knows, after six movies, that Hunt will do whatever it takes to save his butt). Unfortunately, however, fame didn't prevent Rhames from receiving unwanted police attention in his home. As Ving Rhames recounted during promotional rounds for this past weekend's Mission: Impossible - Fallout, the actor was discriminated two years ago when his neighbors wrongfully believed he broke into his house, needlessly altering the police and involving him in a terrifying encounter with law enforcement. Here's how Ving Rhames explained his ordeal with the Santa Monica Police Department in 2016 on Sirius XM.
I open the door. There's a red dot pointing at my face from a nine millimeter. And they say, 'Put up your hands.' The captain of the police -- and you can check this with the Santa Monica Police Department -- he recognized me because my son played against his school, the school his kids went to... Myself, the Sargeant, I believe one other police officer, went over to that house, which is across the street from my place, and the person denied it.
The recounted police incident, as reported by CBS Los Angeles, inspired the Santa Monica police department to initiate the "Get To Know Your Neighbor" campaign, which allows residents to meet their neighbors in the area and get to know them, as the name suggests. Many neighbors claimed they didn't know Ving Rhames lived at the house. This could possibly be related to the actor's tremendously busy work schedule, although those same neighbors told the news channel they weren't out-of-the-loop when it came to Owen Wilson's residency on their block.
Meanwhile, the Santa Monica Police Department responded to the situation by claiming their guns don't have lasers on them, and that it happened two years ago when dispatch "got calls from two separate households reporting on a black man breaking into a home." The Sargeant and four other Santa Monica officers responded to Ving Rhames' 2016 police encounter by saying the officers "recognized the resident," and that "the situation was quickly deescalated" with "no force occurring." Ving Rhames was not the first time Santa Monica residents have called the police on African Americans for entering their own home, and efforts like the aforementioned "Get To Know Your Neighbor" campaign will attempt to prevent similar incidents from occurring in the future.
In the meantime, you can catch Ving Rhames in Mission: Impossible -- Fallout, which is now in theaters everywhere. Beyond his work in those action blockbusters, Rhames is a character actor with more than 100 credits to his name -- including memorable roles in other popular movies like Pulp Fiction and Bringing Out the Dead, so, if you are a movie buff at all, you should probably recognize him from somewhere.