Lewis Reed: Police Called to Fundraising Event After Dispute Escalates [UPDATE]
An argument outside of a fundraising event for Aldermanic President Lewis Reed, candidate for mayor, is getting several retellings, some of them more dramatic than others.
Zudhi Masri, owner of Yeatman Market, says he attended the fundraiser on Sunday night at the invitation of the event's host and as a board member for the Dar-Aljalal Mosque. But he says that when he tried to enter the fundraiser in Ellisville, Abdul-Rahiim Ali -- a St. Louis Teachers Union representative in attendance -- shoved him backward.
"He was a very violent person, and he said a lot of bad things about me and my group," says Masri. "I was threatened."
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Daily RFT first heard about the incident through a series of pretty dramatic tweets sent in the wee morning hours of Monday by State Senator Jamilah Nasheed:
Masri turned out to be the community leader in question and says that he was invited to the event by the homeowner. He surmises that the trouble that ensued was because he supports Mayor Francis Slay's re-election (as does Nasheed). Masri is part of a group of Muslim business leaders who arranged a fundraiser for the mayor, and he hangs a Slay sign in the window of his shop. Masri says he wanted to attend the Reed event as a representative of his mosque and its constituents, not just as a an individual voter. According to Reed, the event was a private fundraiser made up mostly of physicians and other medical professionals from the Muslim community.
Not surprisingly, accounts of what happened -- from the moment Masri approached the door to the point when police arrived -- differ substantially.
Continue for response from Abdul-Rahiim Ali and Lewis Reed.