Lawsuit claims members of the NBA team hurled insults at caterer while he set up food in locker room.
A gay food server claims that he was taunted with homophobic slurs by the Houston Rockets basketball players while setting up a buffet in their locker room during a visit to the Barclays Center, the New York Daily News reports.
Rasean Tate, 28, filed a federal lawsuit against the Rockets after allegedly being harassed on February 22, 2013, when the team was in town to take on the Brooklyn Nets. Tate says his back was turned in the locker room when he began hearing insults hurled at him.
"Get this f----t out of here," and "He’s trying to catch a sneaky peeky!" are two of the alleged comments aimed in his direction, according to the lawsuit filed Tuesday in Brooklyn Federal Court.
"It was loud and gregarious and there were overlapping voices," Tate’s lawyer, Marjorie Masidor, told the Daily News. "I think there’s a bit of irony that this occurred in the same place where a person’s (Jason Collins) sexual identity is accepted and welcomed with openness, while in the same place a visiting team chose to degrade Rasean and set us back."
Masidor is of course referring to Nets veteran Jason Collins, the NBA’s first openly gay player.
A Brooklyn Nets rep allegedly witnessed the February 2013 incident and asked Tate to leave the locker room so that he could take care of it.
The exact names of the Houston Rockets players involved in the lawsuit haven’t been released.
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