Efrem Holmes, a bodyguard for Patti LaBelle (pictured above, second from the left, in a blue tie), was acquitted of misdemeanor assault Monday (Nov. 12), a charge stemming from a 2011 incident at George Bush International Airport in Houston, reports the Houston Chronicle.
LaBelle and her entourage were on their way to a gig in Louisiana when Richard King, a 23-year-old West Point Cadet who was on spring break and had been drinking before, during, and after his flight from Newark, approached her limousine. He then verbally attacked the singer and exchanged heated words with her son Zuri Edwards, who was working as her driver at the time. King punched Edwards, and Holmes stepped in, striking King several times.
According to court documents, King's intoxication level was almost 3.5 times the Texas legal limit that day. Initially, he could not remember what happened and authorities reported him as the aggressor, but no one from LaBelle's team pressed charges. Later, King was given a suspension from the U.S. Military Academy, and once his family saw the surveillance video, they sued LaBelle and Holmes for assault, seeking $1 million in civil court.
LeBelle, not having that, filed a counter suit.
Holmes faced up to a year in jail if the charge stuck.
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(Photo: AP Photo/Houston Chronicle, Mayra Beltran)