Dallas club owner casts doubt about alleged assault in which police suspect Rashee Rice, shares surveillance video


Lit Kitchen & Lounge owner Reza Dibaje says he showed surveillance video from outside his club to Dallas police, and now he wants the public to see it, too.

DALLAS — Lit Kitchen & Lounge owner Reza Dibaje says he showed the surveillance video from outside his club Monday morning to Dallas police, and now he wants the public to see it too.

 “We went through all the videos, cameras outside to see and then the detective pointed out that’s the accuser,”  Dibaje said. “You see him coming across the street with his camera, it doesn’t look like the guy got a head or punch or anything.”

He says allegations that a man was beaten up there early Monday morning in which police sources told WFAA they suspected Kansas City Chiefs wide receiver Rashee Rice, are not true.

“We just want to clear our names because the report came out that there was a fight inside our place,” he said. “I was in the club whole night, and I was even outside, and then there was no fight in my place.”

Dibaje says he’s used to hosting high-end clientele, so when his staff told him a pro football player was getting a table around 1:30 a.m. Monday, he didn’t think much of it at all.

“He was sitting on the other side of this, this section and these are High Roller sections,” he said.

Dibaje says Rice didn’t stay long.

“Not even 30 minutes. It was like between 1:30 and 1:40 that he got in here and he didn’t even have a drink,” he said.

So he was surprised and confused when he got a call from a detective later that morning.

“There was a lot of people here and then we would know if there was something happening in the building,” he said.

In a highly redacted police report where the name of the victim and alleged attacker are omitted, the victim alleges he was inside the club with Rice, left, and then Rice sent him an Instagram message asking to come back. He thought it was to take pictures, but he says once back at the club – the suspect asked him to look at his phone and then punched him, according to the report.

The report alleges a suspect assaulted a man around 2 a.m. on May 6 after asking him to come back to Lit Kitchen and Lounge in the 600 block of Harwood Street under the premise of hiring him to take photos. 

Dibaje says while he’s aware of Rice’s current legal battles, nothing happened at his club to add to them.

Rice is already facing eight felony charges in connection to a high-speed, hit-and-run crash in late March in Dallas — six counts of collision involving bodily injury, one count of collision involving serious bodily injury, and one count of aggravated assault, according to the warrant. All of the charges are felonies.

Collision involving injury carries a penalty of imprisonment in the Texas Department of Criminal Justice for not more than five years or confinement in the county jail for not more than one year, a fine not to exceed $5,000, or both.

Collision involving serious bodily injury – a third-degree felony – carries a punishment of imprisonment in the Texas Department of Criminal Justice of not more than 10 years or less than 2 years. Aggravated assault – a second-degree felony – is punishable by two to 20 years in prison and a fine of up to $10,000.

Records show that, after Dallas Police announced Rice would face charges for his involvement in that crash, Rice turned himself in to the Glenn Heights Police Department and was taken to the DeSoto Jail, where his bond was set at $40,000.

His attorney, state Sen. Royce West, issued a statement after Rice turned himself in, saying that, “Mr. Rashee Rice turned himself in today and was released on bond. I want to re-emphasis Mr. Rice’s continued cooperation with law enforcement. Mr. Rice acknowledges his actions and feels deeply for those injured as a result of this accident. Our legal team is now tasked with reviewing all legal documents.”

Rice, who went to SMU before getting drafted by the Chiefs, grew up in North Richland Hills in Tarrant County. Chiefs coach Andy Reid has said that, as the legal process plays out, Rice would participate virtually in the team’s voluntary offseason program that began earlier this month.

(Note: This video was published May 8)