TODAY   |  October 27, 2013

Jay-Z defends Barneys deal amid claims of profiling

Rapper Jay-Z, whose exclusive line is set to appear at Barneys next month, defends his relationship with the store as it becomes caught up in a racial profiling controversy. TODAY’s Tom Llamas reports.

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This content comes from Closed Captioning that was broadcast along with this program.

>>> silence about why he has not been talking about his partnership with the new york retailer barneys. that store has been accused of racial profiling . tom is back with more on that.

>> lester, a lot of people are talking about this story. jay z released a statement saying he wants to wait until he has all the facts before making any decisions. he claims acting too quickly could hurt the people he's trying to help. he's one of the biggest names in entertainment, now jay z is defending his relationship with barneys as the store faces charges of racial profiling . he's designing a klein to appear in the store next month. in a statement he says the money will go to his charity, writing i'm not making a dime from his collection. in the past week, two barneys customers, both african-american claim they had been stopped and detained after making luxury purchases.

>> i walked out. as soon as i hit to the next block of the corner, the undercover cops stopped me and that was it. they arrested me.

>> reporter: barneys denies voft in the arrest and says barneys new york has zero tolerance for any form of discrimination and we stand by our long history in support of all human rights . for his part jay z says he's been forced into making a statement after a firestorm on social media pressuring him to cut ties with the e are tailers. why am i thrown on the cover of a newspaper for not speaking immediately? jay z whose real name is sean carter says he won't take action until he knows all the facts, writing making the decision prematurely to pull out of this project, wouldn't hurt barneys or sean carter but all the people that stand a chance at higher education .

>> much more to come on this one for sure. by the way, jay z 's foundation provides scholarships to underprivileged kids as well.

>>> tom, thanks very much. now here is erica.