Publicity-beleaguered gay hotelier Ian Reisner, who can't seem to keep his name out of gay headlines since co-hosting Ted Cruz at his Manhattan penthouse apartment in April, has finally opened up about the event that moved his name from the society to the scandal page.
In a New York Times interview published Wednesday that mainly focused on the Ted Cruz party, Reisner, 46, spoke about another infamous event held in October 2014 at his Central Park South apartment that left a 23-year-old manager of a gay bar dead in his bath tub.
"There was speculation I had been with this person earlier in the night," Reisner said of Sean Verdi, who once managed the now-defunct gay bar Bar-tini in Hell's Kitchen. "It was not true. He was a friend of a friend."
"I am an extremely generous host to thousands of people," Reisner said. "And with that openness comes risk that somebody might get harmed."
The cause of Verdi's death according to authorities, was an overdose of alcohol, ketamine, MDMA and ethylone.
"If you have a bar, somebody might get drunk and run somebody over. If you have a party, somebody might take drugs and O.D.," Reisner explained.
In the same Times interview, Reisner's former romantic but current business partner Mati Weiderpass (with whom he still shares the penthouse) said: "Accidents can happen."
The night before Verdi's death, a birthday party for Weiderpass was held at the Rainbow Room, where Jennifer Holliday performed her signature hit "And I'm Telling You I'm Not Going," according to the Times.
The New York Daily News reported at the time that Verdi became physically distressed at Resiner and Weiderpass' apartment later that night. In an attempt to revive him, Reisner and one of Verdi's friends put him in the shower and then the bathtub.
The News noted that according to police sources, a 911 call was made about 8:20 a.m. Verdi was rushed to nearby Saint Luke's Hospital where he died at 9:03 a.m.
In April, Weiderpass and Reisner hosted anti-gay 2016 presidential hopeful Sen Ted Cruz at their apartment. The event ignited the LGBT community many of whom have called for a boycott of his recently acquired commercial properties in the upscale gay vacation mecca Fire Island Pines.
As penance for holding the event, Reisner cut a check for $20,000 made out to the Fire Island Pines PAC and has pledged to donate all of his profits from his new ventures this season to charities benefiting Israel and LGBT causes in New York and Texas.
From our media partner EDGE