Rap star Nelly has filed a complaint with TWA, saying he received poor treatment during a flight because he's black. The 23-year-old artist said a flight attendant refused to give him a pillow as he s

Rap star Nelly has filed a complaint with TWA, saying he received poor treatment during a flight because he's black. The 23-year-old artist said a flight attendant refused to give him a pillow as he sat in first class on a flight from St. Louis to Denver on Saturday. He said when he got up later to find one, the pilot ordered him back to his seat and threatened him with arrest if he failed to do so.

Minutes later, the attendants gave Nelly two pillows, but he said police officers were waiting at the gate when the plane landed in Denver. He said he tried to get the pilot's name to file a complaint, but police told him to leave the gate or he'd be arrested.

"The way it escalated was a result of me being a black man," said Nelly, who complained to the airline on Monday. TWA spokesman Mark Abels denied Nelly's account of the confrontation and said a witness backed up the airline.

Nelly was in St. Louis last weekend taking part in a charity fund-raiser, the St. Lunatics Celebrity Basketball Benefit, with his rap collective of the same name. His most recent solo hit, "Ride Wit Me," is No. 4 on The Billboard Hot 100 in its 17th week on the chart.


AP LogoCopyright 2001 Associated Press. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten, or redistributed.

Questions? Comments? Let us know: @billboard

Print