PLANO, Texas - A woman captured on video hurling racist insults at a group of Indian American women is facing a lawsuit.
One of the women being yelled at and berated in the video, Bidisha Rudra, is suing Esmeralda Upton, claiming the Aug. 24 incident traumatized her and caused her emotional distress.
Upton is charged with assault and making terroristic threats after a now viral video captured outside a Plano restaurant showed Upton’s racist tirade at a group of Indian American women.
Rudra said she is still trying to recover from the traumatic experience after Uptown used racial slurs and reportedly hit her and her friends.
"Life has changed, life changed that night right after it happened," Rudra said. "Four friends were out having a nice dinner. I came home after the incident, and I could not stop shaking."
According to the lawsuit, Upton approached Rudra and two of her friends outside the Sixty Vines restaurant in Plano after she heard them exchanging their goodbyes in an Indian language.
The social media video shows Upton insulting the women, threatening to shoot them and at one point hitting them.
"I hate you f***ing Indians," she can be heard yelling in the video. "Go back to India… we don’t want you here."
Plano police arrested Upton on charges of assault and making terroristic threats. They’re investigating the case as a possible hate crime.
According to the lawsuit, Rudra claims Upton threatened to shoot them multiple times. Part of that threat can be heard in the video.
"Don’t f*** with me," Upton is heard saying in the video. "I will blow your f***ing curry."
Rudra's lawyer, Veronica Moye, told FOX 4 that in the police report, Upton reportedly told officers she had a gun in her car.
Officers ultimately let her leave the scene that night and waited until the next day to arrest her.
"It just shows you the egregious nature of the behavior. To actually threaten multiple times to shoot the group, while putting her hand in her bag," Moye said. "Imagine the horror that could have occurred had she had her gun in her bag."
The lawsuit also alleges Upton punched Rudra’s wrist forcefully, while trying to punch her in the face.
The lawsuit claims that because of Upton’s behavior, Rudra now fears for her safety when she goes out to places like restaurants and grocery stores. She also allegedly suffers from severe anxiety, high blood pressure, and PTSD.
"I have cold sweats when I am in the restaurant or grocery shopping. I can feel my heart pounding heavily when I am outside," Rudra said.
Rudra is seeking damages, but the lawsuit does not seek a specific amount. It asks for a jury trial so that Upton can be held accountable and to send a message that racist and bigoted attacks will not be tolerated.
"What we are hoping is there is the same type of government courage so there are criminal consequences for Esmerelda Upton for her egregious behavior. You have seen the video, outrageous behavior," Moye said.
"If I keep quiet, next day it will happen to my children, it will happen to my neighbor, it may happen to anybody who is a minority," Rudra said.
Upton is currently out of jail on bond. FOX 4 reached out to her by phone for comment, but she did not get back with us.