Retired NBA legend Shaquille O’Neal, rapper Waka Flocka Flame and current NBA player Trey Burke are being sued by a man for mocking his appearance online.
Jahmel Binion suffers from a disorder called hypohidrotic ectodermal dysplasia, which causes limited hair growth, missing teeth, and facial deformities.
He posted a selfie on Instagram back in April, after which Shaq and Waka both reposted it with captions that were clearly making fun of his physical appearance.
How he’s suing the trio, along with Burke, for bullying him, essentially.
Once Shaq found out about Jahmel’s condition, he not only took down the post, he got in touch with Jahmel and apologized, according to reports.
He tweeted about that conversation: “Made a new friend today when I called and apologized to Jahmel Binion. Great dude. #alwayslearning #MYBADCUZ.”
It wasn’t enough for Jahmel, who filed a defamation suit against Shaq, Waka and Burke, who allegedly threw in his own insults over social media.
The lawsuit points out that more than 8.4 million people saw the insults from the trio, and claims that Binion suffered as a result of their treatment of him.
Jahmel, 23, tells Michigan’s Macomb Daily that when the apologized, he feels “they were saying it to get the pressure off of them for being considered ‘bad people.’”
In making that serious allegation, Binion notes that the trio received serious backlash on the Internet for several days prior to reaching out to him.
“Even though I accept their apology,” he adds, “I hope that they donate to my cause or other organizations that connect with ectodermal dysplasia.”
His attorney says the three “constituted a public disclosure of embarrassing private facts about the plaintiff” and “placed plaintiff in a false light in the public eye.”
The “offensive communications” and ridiculing was done “with reckless disregard to the harm that might be caused” to Binion, the complaint says.