Woman Says She Was Raped at Happy Ending Bar

happy ending
Happy Ending press image via Melting Butter.

A 25-year old woman is speaking out after she says she was raped last week by an employee of Happy Ending, the restaurant and bar at 302 Broome St.

Pepper Ellett, who works in a Chelsea art gallery, told her story to Gothamist.  Ellett says she and a friend had a few drinks on the Lower East Side before heading to Happy Ending last Tuesday at around 1 a.m. She believes a male employee of the nightlife venue followed her into a bathroom and sexually assaulted her. Ellett says she thinks she was drugged.

Gothamist describes what happened next:

The next morning, Ellett said she went to work, but her colleagues urged her to go to the Lenox Hill Healthplex on 7th Avenue, where a rape kit was administered. Nurses confirmed her injuries were consistent with sexual assault, and after she told them she wanted to press charges, she was interviewed by three male police officers, two of whom she described as being “in training.” … “One of them just kept asking me, ‘Why don’t you remember?’ And the nurse had to step in and tell him, ‘Well, that’s normal for trauma victims to block out the event, it hasn’t even been 24 hours,'” Ellett says. “But he said, ‘That just doesn’t make any sense. Maybe you’re a party girl. You know regrettable sex is not the same as rape.’ You think I’d choose to be here in the hospital? Do you see the bruises all over me?”

Ellett was eventually taken to the 5th Precinct and then uptown to the Special Victims Unit. Once again, she says, officers were skeptical of her story and tried to stop her from pursuing the case. The NYPD has not made an arrest in connection with the incident. The department did not respond to requests for comment from Channel 2, which featured the story last night.

In a statement, a spokesperson for the bar said:

Happy Ending takes these allegations very seriously and the employee in question was fired immediately that evening when management was made aware of the situation… We will not comment any further so as to respect the privacy of the alleged victim and not hinder the police investigation. We have fully cooperated with the authorities.

Happy Ending was in the news a few weeks ago after co-owner Teddy Perweiler was arrested and accused of assaulting his ex-girlfriend inside the restaurant. His attorney told the Post that the case had been adjourned so long as Perweiler stays out of trouble. He was required to pay $600.

The original Happy Ending bar closed in 2013, reopened last year and has become a nightlife hot spot, as well as celebrity hangout.