'Top Chef' winner Paul Qui charged with assault in Texas

Mon Mar 21, 2016 8:46pm EDT
 
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AUSTIN, Texas (Reuters) - Austin restaurateur and winner of the Bravo television show "Top Chef," Paul Qui, has been charged with misdemeanor assault in connection with domestic violence, local media reported on Monday.

The Austin American-Statesman newspaper published online an affidavit supporting Qui's arrest warrant over the Saturday morning incident at his home.

The affidavit said after a night of partying with friends at their apartment, the 35-year-old Qui flew into a jealous rage when he believed his friends were flirting with his girlfriend and enticing her to have group sex.

He kicked his friends out and began flipping over furniture, throwing things to the floor, pushing his girlfriend against the wall, and not allowing her to leave the apartment with her son, the affidavit said.

It said the girlfriend was in pain, bruised, had a cut on her forearm and swelling on her jaw when police arrived.

"I observed that the (apartment) was in complete disarray," an Austin police officer said in the affidavit, adding that he saw "blood smeared on the walls and the floor."

The affidavit said Qui, whose face, arms and legs were splattered with blood when police arrived, admitted to trashing the apartment, but denied that an assault occurred.

In an emailed statement to the newspaper on Monday, Qui said: "I asked my friend to call the police to aid in an argument with my girlfriend that had escalated beyond my control. I was arrested and charged with two misdemeanors. I am innocent of the charge of assault."

Qui runs the trendy Austin restaurant qui and won season nine of the popular competitive cooking show "Top Chef."

(Reporting by Jon Herskovitz in Austin; Reporting and writing by Curtis Skinner; Editing by Alistair Bell)