Brooklyn nail salon brawl brings 2 arrests, protest to shut down business
Two women were arrested and are facing assault charges after a brawl erupted at a Brooklyn, N.Y., nail salon on Friday night, prompting a protest two days later in an effort to shut the business down.
Michael Lin, manager at New Red Apple Nails on Nostrand Avenue in the East Flatbush area, told New York’s ABC 7 it all began when two customers, Christina Moses and her grandmother, were unhappy with an eyebrow wax that cost $5.
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Lin waived the charge, he said.
The customers also received pedicures at the salon. Lin said he still wanted Moses and her grandmother to pay for those, but they said they already had.
Lin told NBC 4 that staffers blocked the door after the customers wouldn’t pay, and that’s when an argument exploded into a physical fight.
The fight was captured on cell phone and surveillance video.
The cell phone video, which was posted to Facebook Friday, showed people in aprons grabbing a woman’s shirt before another person started hitting her with a long object that looked like a broom handle as she tried to leave the salon.
The video then showed the woman with the long object approaching two other women and swinging it at them while two men held the women.
Yelling ensued throughout the rest of the video.
Meanwhile, surveillance video obtained by the New York Daily News showed an employee walking up to two women with two fellow staffers standing behind him — both of them holding brooms.
The first employee placed his hands on one of the women he had approached before the other shoved him away.
A skirmish ensued, in which one of the women swung her arms in the employees’ direction before she was hit with brooms, leading to a chaotic scene inside the nail salon.
Employee Huiyue Zheng was arrested on charges of criminal assault while possessing a weapon and assault causing injury, harassment and menacing, according to ABC 7.
Moses was also arrested on charges of assault causing injury, harassment and menacing.
The fight triggered a protest with dozens of people on Monday, PIX11 reported.
Activist Jasmine Johnson, who posted video and photos of the protest to Facebook, said one of the employees threw acetone, which is used in nail polish remover, at the women.
Demonstrators at the protest carried Black Lives Matter signs and chanted slogans including “Black dollars matter,” according to NBC 4.
“We need to shut them down every single day,” Johnson said in a video posted to Facebook.
“We need them to know they cannot make any money when they treat our grandmothers like this.”
The salon was open on Monday but no one was inside. Police escorted the owners out of the salon, according to PIX11.
One demonstrator hit a police officer in the back after throwing a bottle.
Prosecutors are looking at more evidence associated with the incident and may adjust the charges, the Brooklyn District Attorney’s office told NBC.