A man punched a woman in the face at a popular French restaurant in Brooklyn after she expressed disappointment about the election of President-elect Donald Trump, according to reports from restaurant staff and witnesses.
On Saturday night, a 49-year-old woman who has not been publicly identified was at Bar Tabac in Boerum Hill with a female friend. According to Jonas Leon, the manager who was working that night, the two women were discussing the outcome of the election when a man at a nearby table got into an argument with them.
The man asked the manager to kick the women out of the restaurant. Instead, Leon moved the man and his dining companion to another table. The man paid for his meal and left the restaurant, Leon said, before sprinting back in and punching one of the women square in the face.
“The guy came back almost running, and he started pushing some customer and the high-chair next to him with the baby because he couldn’t reach the girl,” Leon said. “Then he punched the girl.”
Leon told DNAInfo that the assault was because of politics.
“The guy who punched the girl was pro-Trump for sure,” he said.
One witness, Katie Nave Freeman, told DNAInfo that she was dining at the eatery when she heard people yelling “call 911.” She saw a woman in the back of the restaurant with her hands over her face.
“The woman was extremely (and understandably) shaken,” Freeman said. “She grabbed me, sobbed and held the left side of her face in her hand.”
An NYPD spokesman confirmed to Gothamist that an assault occurred at the bar. The woman did not suffer any visible injuries and refused medical attention. No arrests have been made in the case.
On Monday, Bar Tabac posted a statement about the incident on Facebook.
We at Bar Tabac do not condone violence of any type or manner, especially in our own establishment; to the tough guy who assaulted a female patron of ours on Saturday night over a political conversation: Once the law is done with you, do not come back to Bar Tabac (this includes your partner). At a point in this nation when tensions are highest we need to come together now more than ever, we apologize to any customers who had to witness this vulgar outburst.
In the aftermath of Trump’s surprise election, there has been a slew of reports of racist, anti-Semitic and anti-women attacks by Trump supporters.
“Since the election, we’ve seen a big uptick in incidents of vandalism, threats, intimidation spurred by the rhetoric surrounding Mr. Trump’s election,” Richard Cohen, president of the Southern Poverty Law Center, told USA TODAY.
Advocates working to end violence against women have warned about a possible increase in violence under a Trump presidency.