Actor Fabian Basabe has fired off a cease-and-desist letter to PR pro Tayo Otiti after she accused him of hurling a racial slur at her during artist Mickalene Thomas’ “Better Nights” show during Miami’s Art Basel.
Otiti claims Basabe called her the N-word when he was thrown out of the event.
“The room is at capacity … People have to leave for me to let people in,” Otiti told PAGE SIX. After being unable to gain entry into the show, Basabe called up one of his museum connects, who escorted him in, but the move pissed off “a bunch of people inside,” Otiti claims.
“When he’s leaving, he starts screaming at the top of his lungs, ‘peasant,’ ‘whore,’ ‘bitch’ at me … When he’s 50 yards away, he screams, ‘F–k you [N-word] bitch,’” she said.
Otiti then posted about the incident on Instagram: “I was just called a [N-word] peasant bitch and whore by Fabian Basabe — the flaming piece of s–t racist garbage,” she wrote. But Basabe denies using the N-word.
“There aren’t two sides to this. There is fact,” he told Page Six. He said a museum board member got him into the party: “To avoid drama … I called my friend … I was dancing with everybody — the waitresses, the bartenders. I don’t mean to be full of myself, [but] people genuinely love me.”
Basabe admits he called Otiti a “peasant” on his way out but insisted there was “no argument whatsoever. In passing, I said, ‘nice try, peasant.’ I 100 percent said it and will apologize for it. But she’s using the N-word and ‘whore’ to rally support … It is deeply upsetting and not true for her to use these trigger words,” he said. He then noted that he has famous Black friends: “I just had in my home, Cuba Gooding Jr. . … praying with my kid! I just had George Foreman in my home just this past week … It’s truly unfair.”
Basabe has slapped Otiti with a cease-and-desist letter demanding she keep his name out of her mouth.
A rep for the Bass Museum said, “We are aware there was an incident that occurred … This person is no longer welcome at the museum.”
Retired police officer Fernando Sainz, who worked security at the event, added, “I may be old, but I am not deaf, and I heard it clear as a bell: ‘peasant,’ ‘N-word.’ Nobody deserves to be called that, and that’s what really upset me.”