Updated July 19, 4:15pm
Nationally celebrated bartender Adam Seger was arrested and charged with third degree rape in New Orleans early on Wednesday (7.18). According to the New Orleans Police Department (NOPD), Seger sexually assaulted an unnamed victim in 2015 during Tales of the Cocktail.
The arrest warrant alleges that after several drinks, a man fell asleep in a poolside chair. According to the court filing, when the man awoke, his pants were pulled down and Seger was performing non-consensual, fellatio on him.
The victim attempted to physically distance himself from Seger and asked him to stop, stated the warrant. However, authorities allege that Seger continued to grope and follow the man.
“I thought I was in a safe environment with friends and woke up to being taken advantage of and sexually assaulted,” the man posted on social media the following day.
Police said that the next day Seger also apologized to the man and promised to stay away from any events that the man would be at. Nonetheless, a couple days later, the two individuals were at the same event and Seger sent an unsolicited bottle of champagne to the man’s table reported authorities.
Three days after the alleged assault, the man filed a formal complaint with the NOPD. Included in his statement were photographs of both men with their pants off and Seger’s head on the lap/groin of the complainant.
Orleans Parish Sheriff’s Office (OPSO) records show that Seger was booked early Wednesday (7.18) morning and charged with one count of Third Degree Rape. Orleans Parish Magistrate Judge Harry Cantrell set bond at $25,000. The next hearing is set for August 15 at 3pm.
The 48-year-old, Seger is a nationally known bar star. He is currently employed as “Executive Bartender/Corporate Sommelier at iPic Theaters and TUCK Hospitalty Group” according to his LinkedIn profile. iPic is a chain of luxury movie theaters that sell alcohol, food, and a “premium” experience.
“Named an ‘Innovator’ by Spirit Magazine, Seger created Hum Spirit which he has featured at The Oscars, Eric Ripert’s Cayman Cookout and for Oprah Winfrey’s 25th Anniversary Celebration,” boasts his bio.
For many years, the pool at Tales was rumored to be a notoriously, unsafe environment. These allegations factored among several others that sparked a public backlash against Tales. The disconnect between management and patrons peaked in Fall 2017 resulting in the sale of Tales to a new foundation helmed by the Solomon family.
The new leadership was quick to condemn Seger and the alleged offense. “When we created the Foundation in February of this year, one of our first commitments was to make sure that Tales of the Cocktail New Orleans is safe for our attendees, participants, sponsors, cocktail apprentices, volunteers, staff, committee members, consultants and our Board of Directors,” declared Executive Director Caroline Rosen-Nabors in a statement.
The new team also noted that to facilitate this change in culture, they instituted a code of conduct; set up a 24/7 sexual violence hotline, and bought several partner organizations onboard provide free seminars on sexual violence to the public.
Seger was not involved with Tales in any official capacity this year. He was not scheduled to speak. Organizers stressed that he did not register at the event or the hotel either. Rosen-Nabors added that Seger is most certainly not welcome at any Tales function.