The Slatest

Witness Says Wendell Pierce Tried to Push Into Hotel Room During Sanders Argument

Wendell Pierce.

Lee Celano/Reuters

An individual who was staying in the same Atlanta hotel room as the alleged victim in the Wendell Pierce Bernie-argument-gone-wrong case says the actor tried to push his way into the room during a 3:30 a.m. altercation; Pierce, meanwhile, told police that the individuals he was arguing with tried to pull him into the room.

The hotel room witness told the Daily Beast that Pierce, who was accompanied by a woman, had apparently become involved in a political argument with three individuals—alleged victim Maggie Elena Baca, her boyfriend, and her cousin—and then followed them to the hallway outside their 23rd-floor room. The witness was the fourth person staying in the room and was woken up by the fracas:

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“I went to the door, and Maggie, and her boyfriend, and her cousin had just come in,” the source recounted. “Her cousin is leaning her back against the door and feet against the wall trying to keep the door closed, and the boyfriend is trying to get Mr. Pierce’s hands off his girlfriend. … He was trying to force his way into the room, and had a handful of Maggie’s hair, and yanking on the hair, and swinging his arm around.”

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Pierce is a Hillary Clinton supporter; Baca apparently backs Bernie Sanders. The Daily Beast’s witness says that Pierce struck Baca “a couple times” while trying to charge into the room and that he only relented when her boyfriend threatened to “get a knife.” The Daily Beast source also says that Pierce shouted during the altercation that he was being pulled:

Wendell then loudly claimed that “they’re pulling me in,” but nobody in the room was tugging on him, according to the source.

This matches up with what TMZ reports about what Pierce told police:

Pierce’s side of the story is he followed the Bernie fan and her friends to their room as they argued about Clinton and Sanders—but stayed outside the room. He claims they tried to pull him into the room … as he tried to run away.

Pierce was arrested on a count of simple battery.

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