Alison Ettel said she only pretended to call police on an 8-year-old black child selling water in front of her house.
Alison Ettel said she only pretended to call police on an 8-year-old black child selling water in front of her house. Instagram/ladyesowavy

The US woman dubbed as Permit Patty for calling cops on an 8-year-old girl selling water really called the cops despite claiming she was only pretending. The recording of Alison Ettel’s emergency call has been released, and it has emerged that she had really made the 911 call, but maybe not when she was being filmed doing so.

Last week, the girl’s mum posted the video of Ettel appearing to call cops on an African American girl selling water in front of their flat. The video immediately went viral, with online commenters quickly identifying Ettel’s name. Because the girl was black, it was believed that Ettel’s behaviour was racially motivated.

Ettel has since denied that it was anything racial, claiming she was just lost her temper because the mother and daughter were yelling loudly and repeatedly as they peddle water. She also told SF Gate that she was only pretending to call the cops.

Local paper KTVU, however, has obtained the 911 call audio from San Francisco, California, where the incident took place. The audio proves that Ettel had indeed called the emergency number, but not while she was being filmed.

“Hi, yes, I’m on the sidewalk. I have someone who does not have a vendor permit that’s selling water across from the ballpark,” she is heard saying in the audio. She then asks if there’s “someone to talk to about that.” The 911 dispatcher tells her to hold as she’s transferred to San Francisco Police. The call is cut off while Ettel holds 17 seconds after the transfer. It’s unclear if Ettel hung up the phone or if the call was accidentally disconnected.

San Francisco Police Dispatch records showed that the call was recorded as a report of a “suspicious person.” KTVU has confirmed that the call was made from Ettel’s mobile phone.

In the video that has become viral, Ettel could be heard saying, “Yeah, and um, illegally selling water without a permit,” into the phone. It could mean that at that time, she was truly pretending to call the cops. However, her 911 audio also proves that she had called the emergency service before or after the incident.

Ettel has since resigned from the cannabis company she founded, TreatWell Health.