HOUSTON - Singer Patti LaBelle is countersuing the former West Point cadet who claimed her bodyguards beat him, saying the Houston man started the fight by punching her son in the face.
LaBelle's legal petition, filed in Houston district federal court, is her first response to King's lawsuit, which he filed earlier this month and which seeks actual and punitive damages.
LaBelle's lawsuit accuses Richard King, 23, who was suspended from the United States Military Academy as a result of the March 11 incident at George Bush Intercontinental Airport, of cursing the singer and using racially and sexually offensive language, and says he tried to force his way into her car.
Most of the altercation was captured on security video. However, King was off-camera at times and there is no audio.
The video shows King approaching LaBelle's limo that was waiting in the passenger pick-up area. Three of LaBelle's employees pushed and punched King, and slammed his head into a concrete pillar. King was taken to a local hospital with a concussion.