One of the most popular figures in the Real Housewives of Atlanta (RHOA) TV show franchise has been found not guilty of allegedly choking a woman in a Baltimore restaurant.
Peter Thomas, 62, was acquitted on Wednesday of second-degree assault after he was accused of attacking a woman in a drunken rage, the Baltimore Banner reported.
The victim, identified as Chanel Williams, said after Thomas overheard a conversation regarding himself, he went over to her section and began to choke her.
The alleged encounter took place at Bar One, which is owned by Thomas.
From the Baltimore Banner:
The jury deliberated for less than one hour in Baltimore Circuit Court before acquitting Thomas, 62, of second-degree assault.
“We’re very happy with the verdict,” said Warren Brown, Thomas’ attorney, outside the courtroom in the Elijah E. Cummings Courthouse in Baltimore.
“This man is 62, has led a stellar life, built a successful business. And I think the jury rendered the right verdict.”
Thomas paraphrased a Bible scripture in an Instagram video he posted after the jury acquitted him.
“Though I walk through the valley of death, I shall fear no evil,” Thomas captioned the video before addressing his 768,000 followers on the social media app.
“I just walked out of the courthouse and the verdict came back: 12 out of 12 jurors, not guilty,” Thomas said before challenging his naysayers.
“Keep on coming for me, but I tell them that I’m protected,” Thomas said. “Trying to come for me in all kinds of ways but I’m protected.”
He also advised people to understand if they see him in public and he declines attention in an effort to avoid situations like the one he said resulted in his criminal charges.
“Don’t take it personal,” Thomas told his followers.
However, Thomas added, “stuff like this that makes me stronger. I’m protected.”
Thomas has a history of controversies that have mostly centered on his restaurants.
Just last year, Thomas’ ex-wife and RHOA star Cynthia Bailey accused him of owing $450,000 in back taxes in claims associated with one of his restaurants.
In 2021, Thomas was accused by some of his restaurant employees of writing bad paychecks that bounced, reportedly resulting in the IRS freezing his bank accounts. Thomas vehemently denied the claims.
In 2019, Thomas closed his sports bar and restaurant in Charlotte, North Carolina, over a $237,000 tax lien. Thomas said he spent six days in jail over the ordeal.
There have also been other claims, like in 2014 when the landlord at his Atlanta restaurant claimed more than $100,000 was owed in unpaid rent. In that instance, Thomas told the Atlanta Journal-Constitution he was being falsely accused.
“I don’t owe them anything,” he said at the time.
In that case, Thomas reportedly ended up filing for bankruptcy.
This is a developing story that will be updated as additional information becomes available.
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