Santa Fe Man Who Threw Banana Peel At Dave Chappelle Sues Comedian
The Santa Fe man who threw a banana peel at Dave Chappelle during a show that took place more than three years ago has filed a lawsuit against the comedian.
In a report from the Santa Fe New Mexican, Christian Englander, 33, claimed that after throwing the banana peel Chappelle’s bodyguard proceeded to restrain him, and struck him twice in the face “without provocation” during the encounter.
In the lawsuit Englander alleges the assault happened “under the clear direction of defendant Chappelle.” He also listed various damages suffered from the incident including: unspecified nonmedical expenses, physical and emotional pain and suffering, lost income and earning capacity and “loss of enjoyment of life.”
“Defendant Chappelle had a duty to plaintiff to adequately and properly hire, train, supervise and discipline his security personnel and other employees and agents to ensure that members of the public were not subjected to assault, battery or excessive use of force,” Englander wrote.
He is seeking punitive and other damages from Chappelle “in such amount as may be found appropriate.”
Chappelle has referenced this incident before in his Netflix comedy special released last year, calling it “banana gate.”
However, Englander claimed he had no racial motive when he threw the banana peel at the comedian, adding that he threw it because Chappelle made fun of his friend.
Following the incident Englander was charged with battery and disturbing the peace. But the charges were dropped because Chappelle was unwilling to participate in the prosecution.
Although Englander is suing Chappelle now, in a police report made following the incident there was no mentioning of the 33-year-old being assaulted by the comedian’s bodyguard.
Roderick Thompson, the attorney who represented Englander after he was charged, said that the city gave Chappelle preferential treatment.
“We know that Mr. Chappelle is a big celebrity, and I’m pretty sure that the city will be happy to do whatever it can to accommodate someone of that stature,” Thompson said. “I know from my own practice that there are various occasions when not 100 percent of what happened or what was said was put into the report.”
“No one is above the law, even incredibly hilarious comedians like Dave Chappelle…and his bodyguard,” he added. “Even if someone has done wrong, which is not something that I’m asserting, but even in that situation, people have rights and deserve not to be assaulted, especially when being restrained.”
Source: Santa Fe New Mexican