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Lawyer For 1 Of 3 Texas Women Charged In Carmine's Brawl Says They Were Racially Discriminated Against

NEW YORK (CBSNewYork) -- There are new details surrounding the violent brawl outside of Carmine's restaurant in New York City last week.

CBS New York's Kevin Rincon is reporting that the three Texas women arrested claim they had been racially discriminated against.

The chaos seemed to be over proof of COVID vaccination at the door, but now a lawyer for one of the women involved -- Justin Moore -- says the brawl was triggered by a racial slur.

It took several people to put an end to the fighting captured on cellphone video.

READ MORECaught On Video: Carmine's Hostess Attacked After Asking Tourists For Proof Of Vaccination

In the immediate aftermath, police charged the women from the Houston area with assault.

Staff at the restaurant claimed the women became unruly when they were asked to show proof of vaccination. But Moore says that's not what happened.

"Carmine's and this hostess, they are trying to hide behind this misplaced use of the vaccine policy to justify her racist and completely outrageous actions that day," the attorney claimed.

Moore, who represents Dr. Kaeita Rankin, said the hostess used a racial slur during their exchange and that, "...we know this predicament wasn't due to the vaccine. It was due to a poorly trained staff member at Carmine's who doesn't know how to deal with women of color."

Dr. Rankin was in the city with her niece, Tyonnie, and her assistant, Sally Lewis, on business. "They are working with a recording artist who was recording some songs in New York," Moore said.

Carmine's now says the women did show that they had been vaccinated.

In a statement the restaurant said, "Three female guests in the party who had shown proof of vaccination and been welcomed into the restaurant without issue then launched an entirely unprovoked, brutal attack on our hosts, one of whom continues to suffer from a concussion."

Carmine's said the brawl happened after some men in that same group failed to show their proof of vaccination, adding, "None of the hosts -- all of whom are people of color -- uttered a racial slur."

"Now they said that this woman was Asian-American, but we know there has been a long legacy of Asian hatred towards Black people in this country," Moore said.

In the days after, Carmine's has said it is grateful, "for all of the support from our community and the city, which has been incredibly touching for our staff."

But it has been a different story for the three Texas women.

"The fact they're being casted as folks who are anti-vaccine, and also being casted as ignorant and Black, which is what the prevailing narrative has been. It's completely injurious to these women. On top of that, and to compound issues, they've been receiving death threats as well," Moore said.

The lawyer is calling for the charges to be dropped, which has driven some to protest and call for Carmine's to close.

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