A transgender woman activist and artist claims that she was repeatedly harassed by fellow diners while at the Times Square location of Dallas BBQ, according to a report from Queerty. Andre St. Clair says she was walking to a table with her friends at the restaurant last Saturday when a man grabbed her thigh "in a sexually aggressive manner." The situation escalated to the man and his table yelling transphobic and homophobic slurs at St. Clair, but restaurant management refused to remove the offending man from the restaurant after St. Clair and her friends requested help. In response, Dallas BBQ Times Square management told Queerty that "nothing happened."
But St. Clair says the harassment went on for some time. After she sat down, the man approached St. Clair's table, stroked her arm, and asked her whether she was a man or a woman, according to Queerty's report. When St. Clair confronted the man about his behavior, the man and his friends responded by yelling transphobic and homophobic slurs, St. Clair tells Queerty. St. Clair and her friends approached management, and the Dallas BBQ team moved the offending table to another part of the restaurant but disagreed with their request to remove them, according to a video of the interaction.
It's not the first time controversy over an alleged bias incident has happened in New York locations of the chain. Last year, a video surfaced of a gay couple getting bashed with a chair at the Chelsea location of Dallas BBQ. NYPD initially investigated it as a hate crime, but they ultimately did not charge the man with hate crimes after the man, who was also gay, claimed he was punched first.
St. Clair ultimately filed a police report over the situation. The restaurant manager told Queerty that separating the tables was sufficient because "there were no threats, no violence, no crime committed," repeatedly stating that "nothing happened."