In 2019, a woman named Brianna Avelar sued former NBA player Paul Pierce for employing a man who allegedly sexually harassed her at a hookah lounge. Nearly one year later, that lawsuit is over. The Blast reports that Avelar has dismissed all claims against Pierce.
Avelar originally sued Piece along with the hookah manager Eric Mahoney for sexual harassment, discrimination, harassment and retaliation. She was an employee at the NBA star's lounge called The Truth Hollywood, but she claimed the company fired her for refusing the advances of a manage. In the lawsuit, Avelar never accused Pierce of sexual harassment and only added him as a defendant because he owned the lounge.
According to the lawsuit documents, Avelar said that Pierce and the other owners "knew of the sexual harassment" and the hostile work environment. She said that they "failed to exercise reasonable care to prevent and promptly correct any future harassing behavior against [the woman]. Therefore, Defendant is responsible for Mahoney's conduct." Avelar worked at the bar for two weeks and was directly under the supervision of the manager who worked under Pierce.
The documents alleged that the manager asked her to come into his office during one of her shifts. She claimed in the documents that the manager began to harass her and called her a "very pretty young lady." The manager also allegedly threatened her job security by saying: "if you hook up with me, you can keep your job."
Avelar claimed in the lawsuit that the manager continued to pursue her despite the denial. She said that he cut her from shifts at the hookah bar even though she contacted another manager about her availability. Avelar sued for damages and lost wages, but the documents did not specify an amount.
The former Boston Celtics player also faced another lawsuit in 2018, stemming from an incident at a UFC event. Pierce attended UFC 229 at T-Mobile Arena in Las Vegas and became involved in an altercation with security. Video footage showed him calling a security guard, "a racist." The guard, Christopher Mostello, ultimately filed a lawsuit against Pierce for defamation and intentional infliction of emotional distress.
According to TMZ, Pierce was trying to get back to his seat in the arena but couldn't produce a ticket. He argued with a security guard before continuing to move toward his position. The guard called for backup, involving Mostello, and led to the incident in the stands. A judge later ordered Pierce to pay $100,000.