On Saturday night, an interracial couple and their friend were attacked outside of Long Island City restaurant SHI by a group of men who bombarded them with racial and homophobic slurs. Now, the restaurant is under fire for allegedly not allowing the victims to come back inside following the attack.
Billie and Jacob James-Vogel were out to dinner with Chris Boscia to celebrate Billie's 40th birhday. Boscia claims that after the attack, he asked the conscierge for help, then asked if he could call 911 for them. He says he was denied both times.
The restaurant posted the following message on its website denying any wrongdoing:
It is being reported that we at SHI denied them help. We vehemently deny these allegations because it is simply untrue. We were not aware of the incident until it was over. In any event we were informed the Police were called and on their way. Neither Billie or Jacob Vogel was turned away. As a business serving Long Island City and beyond, we have a very diverse clientele and are very [sic] invloved in the community. We strongly condemn discrimination in all forms and under no circumstances would we turn away anyone who needed help for whatever reason. Our sympathies go out to the james-Vogels and we sincerely hope they recover both physically and emotionally from this devastating incident.
Jacob James-Vogel suffered a black eye and injuries to his head, while his wife was left with a broken toe and several bruises. Police have only made one arrest; Nikolaos Katsos, 28, was charged with assault and harassment.