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Thursday, June 20, 2024 | Back issues
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Atlantic Producer Strangled Her, Photog Says

LOS ANGELES (CN) - An Atlantic Records producer strangled and threatened to shoot a contract photographer and called her a "white honky bitch" during a photo shoot of pop singer Sam Bruno, the photographer claims in court.

Lesa Amoore sued Atlantic Records, Bruno, a "recording artist and producer" known as Bishop, and an agent for all three of them, Omar Alberto, on Monday in Superior Court.

Amoore says Atlantic hired her to take promotional photos of Bruno in April 2015, and on the second day of a two-day shoot in Woodland Hills, Bishop took offense to her request for help cleaning a pool.

As she photographed Bruno by the pool, she says, she asked Bishop for help.

"Bishop was insulted by the request, refused to offer any assistance, became belligerent, called plaintiff a 'white honky bitch' and told her to 'get the fuck out of my house or I'll blow your head off,'" the complaint states. "Bishop then assaulted and battered plaintiff by grabbing her by the neck, choking her, carrying her by the neck for approximately 15 feet, then forcing her onto the ground and forcing his weight on her by using his kneed while continuing to strangle her."

Amoore says she "could have been killed" had her assistant not intervened and taken her outside to tend to the injuries. Bishop stepped outside several times, threatening, "Get her off my property or I'll shoot her."

Defendant Alberto then told her that Bishop had a knife, "and that she should not report Bishop's conduct because (a) Bishop was 'ghetto' and had 'lost his mind,' and (b) Alberto wouldn't 'want me to end up dead' for reporting his misconduct," according to the complaint.

While being taken to Santa Monica Hospital to be treated for neck, knee and hip injuries, Amoore says, Alberto called her "to again demand that she not call the police, telling her it would put her and her children at risk, and that Bishop was continuing to call him and relaying threats against the plaintiff to him."

She says a social worker at the hospital "begged" her to report the incident and contacted police when she refused. Amoore says she was reluctant to press charges, "out of fear for the safety of her children," and that Bishop continued to threaten her, through Alberto, for several weeks.

Atlantic never paid her for her work on the two-day shoot, she says, and insisted that she was at fault, "in a plain effort to further smear her."

Amoore says she also received "abusive messages" from Bruno, as did members of her team.

Atlantic representatives did not respond to a request for comment Tuesday. Nor did Amoore's attorney, Richard Sherman of Beverly Hills.

Bruno headlined the soundtrack to "Paper Towns" with her debut single "Search Party" in 2015.

Billboard listed the track in a "20 Pop Songs You Need For Your Summer Playlist" feature.

Amoore seeks punitive damages for assault, battery, negligence, civil rights violations, emotional distress, services rendered and intentional interference with contract.

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