A U.S. Army officer who was denied entry to Harrah's New Orleans Casino last month is suing the company.
2nd Lt. Deja Harrison posted a video of the incident on Twitter where it received nearly 300,000 views.
The lawsuit, filed Monday in New Orleans, asks that Harrah's develop an alternative method for checking ID cards.
A US Army officer who was denied entry to a New Orleans casino last month is suing the company and its employee who claimed her military ID was fake.
When 2nd Lt. Deja Harrison, 23, attempted to enter Harrah's New Orleans Casino last month for her brother's 21st birthday, her Louisiana drivers license would not scan through the buildings electronic readers. When Harrison produced her military ID she says a security officer, identified in court documents as Corey DOE, said the I.D. was fake.
The lawsuit, filed Monday in Orleans Parish district court, claims the security officer said "this isn't you," and that "there's no way you could've made E6 that quickly," referring to Harrison's former rank of staff sergeant on her ID. In fact, Harrison had recently been commissioned as an officer.
Harrison told Insider she was in disbelief after being told she wouldn't be allowed to enter the casino.
"I provided so much to Harrah's: my paystub, my license, my military ID and my vaccination card," Harrison said.
When the security guard refused to scan her military ID, that's when Harrison started to record the encounter.
—Deja Harrison (@dejaharrisontv) October 5, 2021
A photo of Deja Harrison in her Army uniform.
Courtesy of Deja Harrison
In the video, the security guard can be seen saying, "I'm not saying that the ID is fake. I'm saying that I don't think that it's you."
"He just jumped to his own stereotypes that a Black woman like Deja couldn't rise to her rank that quickly," said James DeSimone, an attorney for Harrison. DeSimone said at this point the security guard threatened to call the police. "Deja started video taping was to document what was happening and this older white male got 'butthurt' because she was videotaping."
The lawsuit asks that Harrah's acknowledges that it violated Harrison's human rights under Louisiana law and that it agree to change its policies around scanning guests' identification when entering the casino. It also seeks an unspecified amount in damages.
"I'm hoping they take accountability of their actions," Harrison said. "They told a lot of lies in their statements and it made me look bad."
Harrah's declined to comment on the lawsuit, but an earlier statement said they denied Harrison entry because "the information on the ID card did not match the information she verbally communicated to our security officers."
—Harrah's New Orleans (@harrahsnola) October 7, 2021
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