Lawyer: Claim that Sean Spicer used racial slur is false

July 29, 2018 GMT

NEW YORK (AP) — A lawyer for Sean Spicer says an accusation that the former White House press secretary used a racial slur to describe a black student while in high school is false.

Attorney Michael Bowe says in emails to The Associated Press on Saturday night and Sunday that the allegation is false and defamatory.

It emerged when a man confronted Spicer at a book signing in Rhode Island on Friday in an encounter that local newspapers captured on video. The man, whom the newspapers identified as Alex Lombard, said Spicer used the epithet and tried to fight him while they attended Portsmouth Abbey School. A security guard then led Lombard away.

Before Spicer’s lawyer responded, Spicer’s publicist on Saturday called the claim outrageous and said Spicer didn’t remember the man or any such incident.