Lawyer: Gates Sent Flowers To Woman Who Called 911

This article is more than 12 years old.

Harvard scholar Henry Louis Gates Jr. has sent flowers to the woman who unwittingly sparked a national debate on race by calling police to report what she thought might be a break-in at Gates' home.

Lucia Whalen's lawyer Wendy Murphy declined to say what was in the note that accompanied the flowers, but described them as "a gesture of gratitude."

Whalen's 911 call drew police to Gates' Cambridge home on July 16. The subsequent confrontation between Gates, who is black, and Sgt. James Crowley, who is white, ended in Gates' arrest for disorderly conduct, a charge that was later dropped.

Whalen found herself vilified by critics who accused her of racial profiling. The subsequent release of the 911 tapes showed she never described Gates or his driver as black.

This program aired on July 31, 2009. The audio for this program is not available.