Jasmine Adams was buying weed at a Staten Island deli when a cashier allegedly called her a “transvestite” before he was caught on film assaulting her, dragging her out of the store by her hair and beating her. The incident took place around midnight on July 28, and the complaint filed this Monday in Staten Island Supreme Court.
According to the suit, Adams, 35, was at West Brighton Deli Grovery & Grill to buy weed for a friend (cannabis is legal in NYC). Adams is not a smoker herself and so she was on the phone with her friend to help her make the purchase. The deli worker interpreted the call as an attempt by Adams to bargain for a lower price.
“I said it wasn’t about the price and that I was just trying to figure out what I was buying, so I paid,” Adams explained to The Daily News. “But he sucked his teeth and got mad at me and threw [the marijuana packet] on the floor.”
Adams then asked for her money back, prompting the casher to threaten to call the police and call her a “transvestite.”
“Even if I was a transvestite, what does that have to do with anything?” Adams said. “Why were you so comfortable putting your hands on me? I didn’t have any weapon. I was a customer.”
Adams is a cis bisexual woman and was wearing a rainbow-colored watch at the time of the incident. After the cashier called her a transvestite, Adams says that he maced her in the face and ran around the counter. She tried to defend herself by swinging a coffee pot at him, but he grabbed her by the hair and dragged her outside. The Daily News was able to obtain the footage recorded by a witness which shows the cashier throwing Adams onto the sidewalk and kicking her in the head.
“Oh my God…. you don’t have to do all that,” a witness said in the video.
“I said to myself that I gotta get outta here because I don’t know if he’s going to kill me,” Adams said.
Adams is suing the company for negligence, assault, battery, and emotional distress. According to the complaint, Adams was “emotionally and physically damaged…. because of the willful, wanton, and malicious nature of the defendant’s actions.”
So far, no arrest has been made.