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Charges filed after hotel bar fight

| Saturday, Jan. 6, 2007

The manager of a bar at the Days Inn hotel in Butler Township was charged Friday with simple assault after he was accused of fighting with a man who became belligerent and refused to leave after the bar closed, authorities said.

Police were questioning witnesses and said charges might be filed against others.

"The initial description of this event has changed, and we are talking to several witnesses," Butler Township police Chief Gary Garman said.

Nathan McCloskey, 28, of Butler, is accused in connection with a Dec. 10 fight that left Brian Roush, 23, of Butler Township, seriously injured. Police said Roush was found lying outside the hotel about 3:15 a.m. that morning. He was unconscious and had a severe head injury.

Roush, who remains in the Acute Brain Injury Rehabilitation Unit at Mercy Hospital, Uptown, is unable to talk or write, Garman said.

Authorities filed a misdemeanor charge against McCloskey because it appears "it was their mutual decision to fight," Garman said.

McCloskey, who still works at the hotel, declined comment except to say Roush is a good friend of his.

McCloskey's lawyer, Michael Zunder, did not return telephone calls yesterday seeking comment.

According to police, Roush was drinking in Frisco's, the hotel bar, and after the bar closed, he became belligerent toward staff and several times refused to leave.

Roush and McCloskey argued and then went outside and engaged in a fistfight, police said. McCloskey is accused of striking Roush several times in the head and face, police said.

"Obviously this is not the proper way to handle this," Garman said. "They should have just called the police and let us deal with the problem."

A punch knocked Roush unconscious, and he suffered skull fractures, police said.

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