Season 9 Top Chef winner Paul Qui was arrested on Saturday for an alleged assault on his girlfriend, Stephanie Rodriguez, reported TMZ. Rodriguez claims that she was pulled out of bed and stopped from leaving the Austin, Texas premises she lives at with Qui.
Officers arrived at the scene “just before 8 a.m. Saturday after a friend of Qui’s calling from outside the apartment,” informed police that he was “fighting with his girlfriend,” reported WFTV.
Qui was reportedly booked for two misdemeanor charges; unlawful restraint and assault causing bodily injury to a family member, reported the site. He was released on the same day after posting a $20,000 bond.
Here’s what you need to know:
1. Blood Was Reportedly Found on Qui & in the Apartment
US Weekly reported that “an officer noted that he ‘could see a fresh cut on her [Rodriguez] right forearm and bruising on her upper arms from Qui grabbing on her and throwing her around the apartment.” A police officer also told the site that her jaw — on the right side — was “slightly puffy and swollen” after the Top Chef winner threw her against the walls and doors.
When the police arrived, one of Qui’s friends asked him to open his East Austin apartment door, which he eventually did. When he did, the police located blood on the walls and floor, stated the site. When he came outside, a police officer said that Qui was in boxers and a tank top with “blood all over his face, arms, legs and clothing,” reported WFTV. He was instantly placed under arrest. The affidavit stated that Rodriguez didn’t assault Qui.
2. Rodriguez Reportedly Told Law Enforcement That Qui Had Been Drinking, Smoking Weed & Taking Xanax and Cocaine
Rodriguez told the Austin police department that Qui was taking a multitude of drugs, which included drinking, smoking weed, and taking cocaine and Xanax. She said that tried to exit the premises with her young son, but Qui allegedly prevented her from doing so. Qui told law enforcement that “all he did was restrain her until cops arrived,” reported TMZ.
The cops stated that there was “a lot of banging around in the apartment” and “yelling and screaming” upon arrival, reported WFTV. Rodriguez told the site that herself and Qui had been living together for eight months and were dating for a year.
3. Qui Reportedly Accused His Friends of Flirting With Rodriguez
TMZ reported that Qui initially pulled his girlfriend out of bed in the early hours of the morning to party with himself and his friends. However, one of Qui’s friends reportedly asked Rodriguez to partake in group sex, sending him into a fit of anger, reported the site.
Qui accused his friends of “enticing her into having group sex,” a police officer told WFTV.
He ultimately kicked his friends out of his residence and directed his anger at Rodriguez. Thereafter, Qui then began knocking over tables, shelves, furniture and broke glass.
4. Tom Colicchio Called Qui the Most Talented Chef in the Show’s First 12 Seasons
As Top Chef’s head judge, Tom Colicchio has seen his fair share of culinary talents. However, he didn’t think that any of them compared to Qui, who he coined “the most talented chef that we’ve ever had on the show,” reported Huffington Post on October 16, 2014.
“We had to dumb down how good he was, because it would’ve been pretty obvious that he was running away with everything,” Colicchio told the site.
5. Qui Was Born in Manila & Moved to the US as a Child
Qui is the first Filipino contestant to win Top Chef’s biggest crown. Now residing in Texas, he relocated to the US at age 10. On March 12, 2014, GMA Network reported that Qui said that his love of food started when he noticed the “smells of freshly baked goods” at his grandparents’ Camiling, Tarlac grocery store.
Quyi also recalled the Filipino tradition of “celebrating around a lot of food, especially around the holidays, reported the site. He later served tables in order to pay for his college tuition. Qui ended up getting into the Texas Culinary Academy and worked his way up to executive chef at its second restaurant, Uchiko.