NEW YORK (PIX11) — A fight between a restaurant hostess and three women from Texas took a new turn on Monday. Black Lives Matter protesters showed up outside the restaurant at the start of dinner service after new details about the reported attack came to light.
Justin Moore, an attorney for the women, accused the hostess of racism and lying to police about what happened last Thursday. “It is unfortunate that Carmine’s and their hostess were able to lie to the police to avoid being held accountable for this hostess’s racism. She physically and verbally provoked confrontation, and then played the victim to criminalize these three Black women,” he said.
The fight between the women and the hostess was caught on video, and you can see one of the women punching the hostess. The narrative from the Upper West Side restaurant was that she asked for proof of vaccination, which triggered an assault by the women.
The women reportedly did provide documentation of COVID vaccinations, but that the confrontation escalated after two men who joined the party didn’t have proof. Moore told the New York Times that the hostess suggested that the vaccination cards they did have were fake, that she spoke condescendingly to the group, who are Black, and even that she used a racial slur. An attorney representing Carmine’s denied the claim.
A spokesperson for Carmine’s said the hostess, who is Asian, walked past the women, who were seated, and told them to enjoy their meal. “None of the attackers offered any reason for their attack. None of the hosts—all of whom are people of color—uttered a racial slur. None of the attackers mentioned anything about race to our managers, staff, or the police who arrested them, and a Texas criminal defense lawyer’s false assertion otherwise is a deeply cynical ploy to try to excuse wanton violence,” the spokesperson added.
The women were given desk appearance tickets for assault and released from custody. They are expected to return to a Manhattan criminal court in early October. Amid the back-and-forth over what actually happened, Black Lives Matter protesters took over the outdoor dining area of the restaurant for hours Monday night.
Restaurant owner Jeffrey Bank said he’s going to have to hire private security to protect his workers. Protestor Steven Lopez, meanwhile, said, “Three women were involved. They were the ones arrested but none of what they said came into light versus what the hostess said.”