On Saturday (May 25), the "Going Bad" rapper documented an incident at the Cosmopolitan hotel which he felt was racially motivated. According to Meek, he was barred from entering the location where DJ Mustard was set to perform later that evening. "Here's the deal. You're on private property. At this time, with the information that we have, we're refusing to do business with you," a Cosmopolitan employee can be heard saying in a video posted to Meek's Instagram. When asked to provide more information on his ban from the casino, the 32-year-old was threatened with arrest.
"Some of these casinos have a bunch of [tactics] to keep the level of blacks down ... but love to take our money!" Meek wrote on Instagram. "This happens to a lot of black entertainers not just me [...]" he continued. Meek's attorney, Joe Tacopina, threatened legal action if the hotel didn't offer a public apology after allegedly learning that "the Cosmopolitan maintains a list of African American recording artists who should be denied access for no other reason than their culture and skin color."
On Monday (May 27), the Cosmopolitan hotel denied Meek's accusation that his blacklisting from the venue was racially motivated. Sources from the casino reportedly told TMZ the Philly native was barred from entering because he previously "fought with security guards" at the hotel.
However, Meek's lawyer vehemently denied such claims. He also challenged the hotel to "produce a video of such altercation or a contemporaneous incident report." Later that evening, the hotel issued an official statement citing a different reason for Meek's ban.
This time, the venue told TMZ Meek was ordered to leave the premises because the Marquee Dayclub where DJ Mustard was performing had reached capacity per Las Vegas Fire Marshall code. Cosmopolitan says the rapper was only threatened with arrest if he violated the capacity limits and attempted to go inside anyway which would have been considered trespassing.
"The assertion that the Cosmopolitan denied Meek because of capacity concerns at Marquee Dayclub is outright false," Tacopina said in response to the statement. "In the recorded video, Meek also inquired about getting a meal at one of the hotel's restaurants, yet their security team continued to deny Meek and said he would be arrested for trespassing regardless of location in the premises. The Cosmopolitan's conduct continues to be deplorable."
On Tuesday (May 28), Tacopina confirmed he will pursue "heavy monetary damages" against the venue for "lying and humiliating" his client. "I'm going to take this place down because of what they did [to Meek]," he told TMZ.
The lawsuit will reportedly allege racial discrimination under state and federal law in addition to defamation of character. Tacopina told the site he has identified two other rappers who have also allegedly been denied entry into Vegas hotels because of their race. Watch the video of the incident that started it all ahead.