Things That Matter

Video Of A Racist White Woman Violently Attacking A Black Hotel Worker Has Gone Viral And It’s Shocking

A worker at City Club Hotel in New York City, says a customer went on a racist tirade, eventually physically assaulting her. Linda Shell, who was at the front desk, asked to see Michell Rajacic’s ID after she began angrily demanding a room key according to a lawsuit filed with the Manhattan Supreme Court. 

Video footage seemed to confirm Shell’s allegations. The video shows Rajacic calling Shell, “n—-r,” “dirty f–king raunchy skank,” “dirty f–king hood rat,” “f–king ghetto ass,” among other horrible names. Rajacic spat on, then assaulted Shell, according to the lawsuit. 

Rajacic hit Shell in the face with a cell phone, the lawsuit alleges.

“I have my f—–g ID you f—–g piece of sh-t,” Rajacic yells slamming what looks like a credit card on the desk. 

When Shell tells her a visa card is not a valid form of ID and refuses to give her a key until she shows her one, Rajacic gets more belligerent. 

“I know, it’s just my f—–g name and it’s on the f—–g room,” Rajacic shouts in the video. “I know your f—–g ghetto ass may not know. I’m paying you for your f—–g job … actually my boyfriend’s f–king family pays you.”

After Rajacic called Shell a ton of racial slurs and claimed her boyfriend paid Shell’s salary, Rajacic began to get physical.

“After, she kept spitting. I was getting more upset because that is the lowest thing you can do to someone. I said, ‘OK, ma’am, it’s time for you to go,’” Shell told the New York Post.

Shell began to escort the disgruntled customer towards the front desk, that’s when things further escalated. 

“I grabbed her arm and started leading her to the front desk. She then broke her cellphone across my face,” Shell said.

Shell is a transplant from Savannah, Georgia. The 36-year-old was shocked that something like this would happen up North, being from the Deep South she had hoped she was leaving all of that behind. 

“When it comes to anything racial, you have a better chance of it happening down south than up north. I never in my life thought I would have to experience that up here. That’s why I moved here,” Shell said.

Shell is suing Rajacic for unspecified damages. The case is sealed and the Manhattan District Attorney’s Office would not comment. Fortunately, Shell has already one this battle in criminal court, which may help her case in civil court.

“Defendant spit on Plaintiff and then assaulted, battered, and attacked the Plaintiff, and used physical force without cause or justification and without Plaintiff’s consent,” the lawsuit claims.

City Club Hotel appears to be siding with Rajacic for some reason.

“While Ms. Shell demonstrated noble restraint in the face of such bigotry, what she was forced to endure should not, and will not, be tolerated,” Shell’s lawyer, John Tait told the New York Post. “We will fight to ensure that Ms. Rajacic is held to account for her actions.”

When the incident happened, police arrested Rajacic and she was eventually convicted of third-degree assault. However, when Rajacic got out of jail City Club Hotel gave her a free room. Shell was so horrified, she quit her job. 

“I told them I could no longer work there, because my safety is no longer important to them,” Shell said.

Joshua Barbee, the City Club Hotel general manager, told the New York Post he had no idea about the incident. 

“This is the first we are learning of this litigation,” Barbee told the New York Post. “The claims being made regarding the hotel are completely incorrect. With that said, since this is pending litigation, we will have no further comment.”

Hate crimes continue to soar in the era of Trump.

The FBI reported that violent hate crimes have begun to soar, accounting for 61 percent of all hate crimes, during the Trump era. In 2018, hate crimes increased specifically for Latinx and LGBT members, however, black people are the most frequently attacked group. 

“We’re seeing a leaner and meaner type of hate crime going on,” Brian Levin, director of the Center for the Study of Hate and Extremism at California State University San Bernardino, told NPR. “Homicides were up and crimes against persons were up and that’s an important thing to look at.”

Shell appears to be another victim of emboldened racism in the Trump administration’s era of “us against them,” rhetoric. The only silver lining to the continued trauma of people of color is the ubiquitousness of cameras that often vindicate the typically disbelieved — with various results in regard to real justice. 

Maya Berry, executive director of the Arab American Institute said of the upward trend in hate crimes, “The Trump administration has advanced policies, and the president has trafficked in rhetoric, targeting the same communities that have also experienced a surge of hate violence.”

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