By Justin Fenton, The Baltimore Sun
5:30 PM EDT, May 16, 2013
A 28-year-old man who police were initially told died after being hit over the head with a beer bottle by a stranger in Curtis Bay was killed by a family member who punched him during a brawl, police say.
Bobby Mack Jr., a cousin of victim Cyril Montel Holland, is now facing one count of manslaughter. Mack's attorney said the incident was an "unintended tragedy as a result of horseplay between family members."
Holland died April 10 at Maryland Shock Trauma Center after suffering a fatal blow to the back of the head. He had been driven to Harbor Hospital by two relatives: Darrell Oliver, 27, and Mack, 19, two brothers who said Holland had been attacked by a man who picked a fight with them, records show.
But homicide detectives learned that a home in the area had a surveillance camera system that had captured the whole incident. It showed Oliver and Mack drive into the block and walk into a residence in the 1600 block of Cypress St., where they emerged with Holland and an uncle of Oliver and Mack, detectives wrote in court papers.
The uncle and Oliver could be seen fighting, with Holland and Mack attempting to break it up, records show. The fight — pushing, punching, wrestling — continued for about 10 minutes.
The fight appeared to be winding down, with Mack seen holding back the uncle and Holland holding back Oliver, records show. Mack suddenly charged at Holland and punched him in the face, and he fell backward, slamming his head on the ground, records show. He lost consciousness immediately, police said.
Mack and Oliver attempted to resuscitate him, splashing water on his face and performing CPR, police said the video shows. They carried him over to their truck and took him to Harbor Hospital, where they initially gave a fake name for him of Michael Johnson. They later explained that they had given the fake name because Holland had open warrants, court records show.
Though a broken beer bottle was found at the crime scene — along with several dreadlocks ripped from the head of the uncle during the fight — police said Oliver and Mack lied about the circumstances, and Mack later gave another statement consistent with the video evidence, police said.
Mack, of the 4900 block of Pennington Ave., has no prior criminal record and was free on $500,000 bond, records show. Oliver was not charged with any crimes.
Richard Berger, Mack's attorney, said Mack attends college and is remorseful for what happened. "To my knowledge, they were all drinking, and this is not an unusual situation where those family members would horseplay like that," Berger said. "It probably got a little out of hand, but there was no intent to kill."
"This was a one-punch situation," Berger said.
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