A former security guard at Alexander McQueen’s NYC flagship store has filed a lawsuit against staff at the store for racial abuse. Othman Ibela, a native of Gabon, claims the shop’s clerk, Kimberley Mahnke, “repeatedly made jokes about me running nude in Africa with a spear in my hand”. He also claimes that she told him President Obama and his family would be kicked out of the White House and “sent back to Africa” after the 2012 elections.
The shop’s manager Catherine Flynn has also been named in his filing to the Equal Employment Opportunity Commission, in which he claims she repeatedly asked him “why Muslims were always killing people” and mocked his accent. He states that black customers were flat-out ignored by the boutique’s staff, unless they happened to be Beyoncé
Apparently things got so bad Ibela harbored thoughts of harming the staff, and himself. “They attacked me again and again,” he told The Post. “I wanted to kill them and kill myself. Then everybody would be a loser.” He was so distressed by the attacks that he required hospitalization for anxiety attacks and depression, the filing says.
“This is one of the most profound reactions I’ve ever seen to racial harassment,” said Ibela’s attorney, civil rights lawyer Joshua Friedman.
When he asked to be reassigned, his pay was docked and his hours were cut, the EEOC documents state. He finally resigned in January.