Alec Baldwin denies using racial slur to refer to photographer
Actor Alec Baldwin says he did not use a racial slur in a Sunday morning confrontation with a photographer that landed on the cover of the New York Post.
"This is completely false," Baldwin's spokesman Matthew Hiltzik told TODAY of the alleged racial slur.
"The claim of racist remarks is one of the most outrageous things I’ve heard in my life," said Baldwin.
According to the Post, reporter Tara Palmeri and G. N. Miller, a former policeman turned photographer, approached Baldwin Sunday morning as he was walking his dogs in New York, asking about a lawsuit filed against Baldwin's pregnant wife, yoga instructor Hilaria Thomas Baldwin.
The Post reports that Baldwin grabbed Palmeri's arm and told her, "I want to choke you to death," then used a racial slur to refer to Miller, who is black.
The Post ran a photograph of Baldwin holding Palmeri's arm as she holds a small tape recorder, and reports that Palmeri played an audio recording of the conversation for the police.
Baldwin told Gothamist that he felt the photographer deliberately "banged into me with his shoulder." The actor denied using racial slurs, saying "I don't think I've ever uttered a racial epithet to someone in my lifetime."
Police confirm that Baldwin and Miller filed complaints against each other after the incident.
Baldwin has been tweeting about the incident, writing in one message, "That's kind of magical thinking, isn't it? The Post accusing me of racism?" The Post reports that Baldwin removed some of his earlier tweets about the incident, including one in which he reportedly twice called Miller a "crackhead."
Baldwin also tweeted, "I find it ironic that my foundation's last grant was $50,000 to the Arthur Ashe Learning Center." Ashe, the only black tennis player ever to win the singles title at Wimbledon, the U.S. Open and the Australian Open, passed away in 1993.