As protestors gear up for two anti-racism events this weekend, new information has surfaced about the events surrounding last Saturday night's arrest of Houston Dynamo players Tyler Deric and Warren Creavalle at a popular Washington Avenue lounge.
Eyewitnesses close to the two Dynamos players tell CultureMap that Deric and Drank are friends, and traveled to the club together with Warren Creavalle and several other African-American friends in two taxis. They had reserved tables at the Roosevelt in advance and were joining several other Dynamo team members already inside the club.
The two incidents at the Roosevelt Bar on Feb. 4 — one with Dynamo players and another with hip-hop group Drank — were, in fact, one in the same.
The group was then told they couldn't enter because of the Roosevelt's restriction on casual attire and were asked to leave.
"Half the group . . . you could tell they'd been partying all day by the way they were dressed," club owner Saleem Fernandez told The Houston Chronicle in his only interview on the incident. "They were very dressed down — tennis shoes and T-shirts."
Witnesses close to those involved in the incident dispute that to CultureMap, saying the group knew of the club's policies and dressed accordingly. The witness also claimed that three underdressed white males in T-shirts were permitted inside while the argument continued to escalate.
The Houston Police Department tells CultureMap that as the Drank/Dynamo group left the scene, Deric shouted obscenities at off-duty officer Ramon Perez and sergeant Michael Ferguson, who were working at the club on an department-approved security job.
HPD said Deric and Creavalle ran through the parking lot, ignoring the officers' calls for them to stop. Perez briefly detained Deric until he was knocked over by Creavalle. The officers caught Deric again, this time using a Taser to subdue Dynamo player.
Other eyewitnesses, however, claim that Creavalle was too busy recording the tussle on his cell phone to push Perez. They also noted that Deric was "off the property" when he was detained a second time, and that he raised his hands in submission before getting "unfairly" Tased.
On Saturday, Drank will stage a special "F%$# Racism" show to raise awareness about the incident. Controversial activist Quanell X will protest the Roosevelt on Sunday.
CultureMap spoke with Drank on Thursday, but, due to the pending legal situation, the group said they could only say that Deric was a "very good person" and was simply standing up for his friends.
To their knowledge, Drank members did not believe he was drinking that evening, contrary to prior statements from a club representative.
Roosevelt Bar owner Saleem Fernandez is not accepting interview requests at this time, according to his publicist.
On Saturday Feb. 11 at 9 p.m., the hip-hop trio Drank will stage a special "F%$# Racism" show at The Manor on Washington to continue to raise awareness about the incident. "Those going to the concert," the group tweeted Friday, "No sneakers, Timberland Boots, No Polo Boots, No Baggy Jeans or T-shirts."
"Something negative happened," Drank producer and manager Wine-O told CultureMap. "But, ultimately, Drank's stance is positive. Stuff like this is always happening on Washington, and (the Roosevelt) has been reported for this type of behavior several times already."