Meek Mill is prepping to sue a Las Vegas hotel if they don’t apologize for racially discriminating against him.
The rapper exposed the incident on his Twitter account Saturday, May 25, when TMZ reported he showed up to the Cosmopolitan Hotel and Casino at 3:30 p.m. to attend a DJ Mustard show at the venue.
“If you come from our culture you should never step foot in the cosmopolitan hotel they just really racist as hell …. something really has to be done in Las Vegas what they doing to black people!” Meek tweeted.
“They telling black rappers they are banned from properties they own without incident … they just told me I was trespassing and I will be arrested I stepped in that hotel once at a jayz party without incident!” he added in another tweet.
The rapper’s claim was backed by his attorney, Joe Tacopina, who told TMZ he heard from “a well-placed person inside the hotel” of claims a group of Las Vegas casinos has tried to keep rappers out of their establishments. Tacopina believes race is a factor.
“They wouldn’t ban Vanilla Ice,” he said.
A video captured of Meek’s confrontation with Cosmopolitan Hotel reveals more of the aftermath.
“If I walk upstairs and get something to eat, Imma be arrested for what? For being a rapper?” Meek is heard asking a hotel security guard who says he’d be arrested for trespassing. “For what? For what, though?”
The guard tells one of Meek’s security personnel they can get in touch with the hotel’s vice president.
A follow-up clip shows an “appointed representative” of the hotel’s property request that he stop being filmed. Meek’s personnel refuse and the hotel worker begins reading off warning that Meek is trespassing on the property and will be arrested if he returns.
In a letter addressed to Cosmopolitan owner Anthony Pearl and obtained by HipHopDX, Tacopina said the security “brazenly denied access to Mr. Williams without just cause. … And, evidenced thereby, despite inquiring as to the reason for his denied access, Mr. Williams was afforded no explanation whatsoever. Simply put, your security chief embarrassingly did not even know the reason for Mr. William’s denied entry.
“We have learned 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,” the letter continues. “Such course of conduct constitutes discrimination per se, in violation of state and federal law, and exposes you to significant monetary damages.
“In light of the foregoing, we urge you to promptly issue an apology to Mr. Williams and grant him immediate access,” Tacopina concluded. “In the event you fail to heed this one and only warning, we intend to pursue all legal recourse against you.”
Cosmopolitan issued a statement to News 3 not giving an apology but saying, “As a matter of company policy, we do not comment on legal matters. Our guests’ safety and security always remain our top priority.”
By Monday, May 27, the hotel spoke at length about the incident and told TMZ in a statement it has “zero tolerance for discrimination.”
“Marquee Dayclub had reached capacity per Las Vegas Fire Marshall code. Earlier that day, Las Vegas Metropolitan Police had been called onsite to manage a larger than usual venue crowd,” it continued.
“Accordingly, when Marquee Dayclub was contacted in advance of Meek Mill’s arrival, security staff clarified that he would not be granted access because of capacity issues, in accordance with both club and resort policy. Upon his arrival, it was reiterated to Meek Mill and his team for a second time that access to the venue was not permitted,” the statement went on.
Cosmopolitan also said Meek “refused to depart the property.”
The statement came after a source told TMZ that the hotel allegedly denied Meek’s entry because of a past incident in which Meek “fought with security guards.” The “Champions” rapper’s attorney denied the claim and stated Meek “was never involved in a fight on their property, ever. … The legal case against the Cosmopolitan just got stronger.”
Following the hotel’s official statement, Tacopina said the following.
“The assertion that the Cosmopolitan denied Meek because of capacity concerns at Marquee Dayclub is outright false,” read his statement to TMZ, “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.”
Meek has also issued a statement of his own tweeting Monday, “The cosmopolitan issued a statement that it was over capacity at a pool party why I was banned but told me I would be arrested just for stepping on their property even if I went to eat on the property ‘not at the pool party’ doesn’t even make sense.”
In a separate tweet he said, “And I don’t care about that casino I bring in millions every time my name mentioned on a Vegas casino event where I am always welcome … but y’all not gone just treat us like shit and act like it’s normal 🤷🏾♂️ Put some respect on our race ‘please and thank you.’”