Interracial Couple Complains of Attack
By CAMERON LANGFORD
Tuesday, October 01, 2013
HOUSTON (CN) - A drunken, racist Allstate agent berated an interracial couple, pulled the husband halfway into his car, and drove off with the man's legs dragging on the street, the family claims in court.
Bertholet Renelique and Celine Realini, along with their sons Ethan and Jonathan, sued Brooks Boyd and Allstate Insurance aka Allstate Texas Lloyd's in Harris County Court.
The couple says they were eating dinner at a Houston restaurant with their boys and a family friend as Boyd and his female companion ate nearby.
Boyd kept ordering alcohol and was "obviously intoxicated," according to the complaint.
"After becoming intoxicated, Mr. Boyd began loudly expressing his distaste for the Reneliques' interracial relationship," the complaint states. "The Reneliques were unaware of Brooks Boyd's disdain for interracial relationships prior to them leaving the restaurant. Both the Renelique family and Brooks Boyd left the restaurant separately."
In the parking lot, Boyd allegedly began taunting Renelique.
"Mrs. Realini tried to diffuse the situation by asking Mr. Boyd to stop," the complaint states. "Mr. Boyd then proceeded to physically assault Mrs. Realini. Among other things, he grabbed her by the shirt and snatched her toward the inside of the car where he was sitting. Mrs. Realini suffered serious injuries to her face.
"Mr. Renelique rushed to defend his wife. He too was attacked by Mr. Boyd. At some point, Mr. Renelique was pulled halfway into the car. Mr. Boyd grabbed Mr. Renelique and drove down the road with Mr. Renelique's legs dragging on the pavement.
"Mr. Renelique suffered serious injuries. The Renelique children, Ethan and Jonathan, witnessed the entire incident and were very distraught."
The family wants up to $5 million and punitive damages.
They sued Boyd for assault and negligence, and Allstate for negligent entrustment, as the car Boyd drove during the incident had allegedly been leased by Allstate.
Troy Pradia with The Cox Pradia Law Firm in Houston represents the Reneliques.
Prosecutors had declined to charge Boyd over the incident, Pradia said in an interview.
"They tried to file criminal charges but the DA's office did not pursue it because they believe it was mutual combat," Pradia said. "But there's no way it was mutual combat, and that's something we'll address in court."
Boyd did not respond to a request for comment.