In summer 2018, CNN anchor Don Lemon allegedly assaulted a bartender at Murf’s Backstreet Tavern, a bar in the Hamptons.
Doug Hice says he saw Lemon, realized who he was, and introduced himself. Lemon wasn’t interested in talking or drinking with Hice; but then later, Lemon came up to him and confronted him, according to the suit. Another man has come forward now, corroborating Hice’s claim.
“Don Lemon has now come around the corner and is standing face to face with us. There is a beam, a pole, in the place. Don’s standing up against the pole, face to face with Dustin, I turn around and I’m standing right there between the two of them,” witness George Gounelas told Fox News. Gouenelas was with Hice, he says, and was Hice’s former boss.
“He’s saying, ‘So you like me? Is that why you’re bothering me?’”
Hice responded, “Nah, man, I just wanted to say, ‘What’s up?’” according to Gounelas.
Gounelas told Fox News he couldn’t recall what Lemon said verbatim, but it was “along the lines of, ‘Do you like me? Is that why you’re bothering me, because you wanna f— me?’”
Hice is alleging the CNN anchor “put his hand down the front of his own shorts, and vigorously rubbed his genitalia, removed his hand and shoved his index and middle fingers in Plaintiff’s moustache and under Plaintiff’s nose.”
Gouenlas continued, “If someone had done that to me, I probably would have punched him. But I think it might have been flirting. I think Dustin was more in shock… If someone was flirting with me like that I’d say, ‘alright man I’m not gay,’” Gounelas said. “I wouldn’t go up to a girl like that. It could be his way of flirting.”
Lemon, for his part, “categorically denies” the allegations. He has hired frequent CNN guest, legal commentator Caroline Polisi, to represent him.