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Martin Lawrence accused of hitting woman

Alleged victim seeks more than $25,000 in damages
/ Source: The Associated Press

A woman sued comedian Martin Lawrence for allegedly hitting her in the jaw at a party after she asked him if he’d be interested in attending another party at the Playboy mansion.

Jennifer Palmer sued Monday in Superior Court seeking more than $25,000 for assault, battery and intentional infliction of emotional distress.

Lawrence’s publicist, Arnold Robinson, said the accusations are false and “financially motivated.”

The lawsuit alleges Palmer approached Lawrence at a Jan. 18 party and told him about another party she knew was happening at the Playboy mansion. Lawrence responded by “wildly waving his hands around, slurring and mumbling in a manner suggesting that he was intoxicated or otherwise disoriented, using very foul language,” the lawsuit said.

When he heard Palmer telling friends about his behavior, he allegedly confronted her “in an angry and threatening manner,” the lawsuit said. Palmer tried to push him away and he allegedly struck her in the jaw.

Witnesses contacted by Lawrence’s representatives told a different story, Robinson said.

“An intoxicated and disorderly individual verbally insulted and physically attacked Lawrence without provocation, at which time Lawrence understandably moved to defend himself,” Robinson said in a statement.

A hearing in the case was scheduled for June 7.