A case of when keeping it real goes wrong? The “real” in this case is reality TV. The potential wrong? Well, according to a lawsuit filed by a gentleman named Ronnie Spates, the stars of reality TV’s Black Ink Crew: Chicago really beat his ass at a party for their show.
Spates claims he “suffered serious physical injuries” back in December when Black Ink Crew: Chicago cast members Ryan Henry, Van Johnson, Don Brumfield and Junior Diaz attacked him for no reason, the Chicago Tribune reports.
The altercation—which, according to the Tribune, apparently was aired during a Feb. 13 episode of the show—happened during a party held at the 9Mag tattoo parlor that’s central to the show.
According to TMZ, Spates claims the four cast members basically were doing it for the ‘gram—or, in their case, reality TV ratings.
[Spates] says the reality show’s production company wanted a fight to break out to make better TV.
Spates claims he was an invited guest minding his own business at the party when Henry, Johnson, Brumfield and Diaz began kicking the crap out of him. He says the brutal beatdown left him licking serious wounds.
Spates claims show producers fueled the party with loads of booze and actively sought to encourage situations that would lead to conflict, verbal spats and physical altercations ... just so they could create explosive content.
So, in addition to each of the four cast members named, Spates also names the show’s production company, Big Fish Entertainment, in a suit that seeks more than $200,000 total. According to the Tribune, Spates charges that reps for the company “provided large quantities of alcoholic beverages” at the party and its security “failed to prevent the attacks.”
Per the Tribune:
Spates is seeking more than $50,000, plus lawsuit costs, from each of the cast members and Big Fish. Spates’ attorney and VH1 representatives did not immediately respond to a Tribune request for comment. VH1 is not named in the lawsuit.
Big Fish also didn’t respond to reporters’ requests for comment.