Trans woman says bouncer at NoDa bar attacked her, used homophobic slur

CHARLOTTE — A transgender woman believes she was the target of a hate crime. She said a bouncer at a NoDa bar attacked her, and she caught the entire interaction on her Meta glasses.

“I’ve never felt protected by technology before but in this case, it shows what happened,” Lynette Matusik said. “You can’t dispute that.”

Matusik said the incident unfolded when she didn’t show her identification at Billy Jack’s Shack on North Davidson Street over the weekend.

The bar said after Friday night’s incident, it’s no longer using the third-party security company that was involved.

Matusik has two black eyes when she spoke to Channel 9’s Genevieve Curtis about the incident on Monday. She said her Meta glasses, which can record and live stream, show what happened on Friday night from her perspective.

“In this case -- it’s a horrible perspective to be inside -- but you see the point of view of the assault and the contact with this person,” she told Curtis.

The video shows her at the bar asking for a menu. She said moments later, the bouncer came up from behind her.

“Then suddenly my arm is being grabbed, so I pull away,” Matusik said. “As soon as I pull away, somebody body slams and he puts his hands around my throat and says ‘you are not going to give me your ID?’”

In the exchange that follows, you can hear Matusik saying she is being choked.

“Oh hey, why are you grabbing me?” she says. “This is recording, I’m recording.”

“I don’t care,” is the response.

“Why are you choking me out?” she asks.

“I don’t know you.”

Then a few seconds later, the bouncer appears to be standing over her.

“I asked you for your ID, get the [expletive] out of here, bro,” the bouncer says.

Matusik said he dragged her into the street, punched and kicked her while using a homophobic slur.

“He struck me repeatedly,” Matusik said. “I don’t know what point he was trying to get across. After the first time, I’m seeing stars. It was horrible.”

Matusik said she went to the hospital. While she was there, an officer gave her a citation for assault. The bouncer claimed she bit him in the thigh.

“That makes no sense, that’s a fabrication,” she said.

Billy Jack’s posted on Facebook, saying “the event on Friday night unfolded in a way that contradicts the very thing that Billy Jack’s stands for.”

The bar says it parted ways with the third-party company which provides security for them.

Curtis reached out to the security company and the security guard involved but has not received a response. She also asked police whether this is being investigated as a hate crime.

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