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Los Angeles gay bar The Abbey has launched a lawsuit against Haely White, a woman who publicly accused a bartender at the venue of drugging her.
The story began on July 29 when White visited The Abbey. On August 3, she took to social media to make the accusation that she was “severely drugged by a bartender.” She also encouraged her followers to “spread the word.”
Now Newsweek reports that a thorough review of security footage of July 29 did not reveal the bartender to have drugged White’s cocktail. White had initially agreed to change her social media post and correct her statement by August 14.
White did release a statement August 15 conceding that the bottles used to mix her cocktail did not appear to be tampered with in any way. She also noted that other patrons had ordered drinks mixed with the same liquor bottles, and did not have an adverse reaction. No other patrons reported being drugged that night.
“I believe [The Abbey’s] actions demonstrate that they are concerned about the safety of their patrons and take measures to make their establishment safe,” she wrote in a lengthy statement on social media.
White then posted a follow-up statement to Instagram which again appeared to imply that she had been drugged at The Abbey.
“I also have NEVER felt so sick in my life with one exception — when I was roofied many years ago…” she wrote in a now-deleted post.
The Abbey has now filed a lawsuit in the matter, suing White for defamation, trade libel, breach of contract and breach of the covenant of good faith and fair dealing.
White, for her part, continues to deny wrongdoing.
“The Abbey’s lawsuit against me is nothing more than bullying and victim shaming,” White said in a statement to Newsweek. “I had resolved the situation with them by issuing a corrective statement that they signed off on and that I still stand behind—yet in an act of bad faith they turned around and sued me despite my doing what they asked, even though everything I’ve said since then is consistent with the corrective statement. This is nothing more than an effort to silence me.”
White also released a lengthy statement on Instagram, also accusing The Abbey of bullying.
“At this point, they’ve chosen to make me a scapegoat, reduced my ability to talk, and acted in bad faith,” the statement read in part. “If this isn’t abundantly clear: this is the WORST kind of victim shaming there is. Abbey: Is this how you treat customers? Shame on you.”
The case remains ongoing.