Prosecutors Have Five New Videos of Brutal MacDougal Street Beating
MANHATTAN SUPREME COURT — Attorneys defending two young men charged with beating a 24-year-old with baseball bats on MacDougal Street in January say additional video footage of the vicious incident will vindicate their clients.
Prosecutors turned over five DVDs of the Jan. 13 beating of Kevin McCarron, caught on surveillance cameras and cellphones, to defense attorneys in Manhattan Supreme Court Tuesday afternoon.
Attorneys for two of the three beating suspects nabbed by police said they expect the videos will provide proof their clients did not instigate the early-morning brawl that left McCarron with a fractured skull.
"They'll show he was there," said James Kirshner, lawyer for Hatem Farsakh, 24. "The question is what level of involvement he'll have."
Accused attacker Sherif Rizk's attorney, Spencer Leeds, also said the videos will help clarify the role his 22-year-old client played in the attack.
"We maintain [Rizk] was nothing but a peacemaker," Leeds said.
The new videos were not immediately available Tuesday.
Both young men appeared somber at their Manhattan Supreme Court arraignments Tuesday. They face a total of 11 counts of attempted murder, assault and gang assault.
Farsakh, Rizk — both Brooklyn residents — and a third suspect, 30-year-old Mahmoud Habib, are all out on bail. Habib was previously arraigned in Manhattan Supreme Court.
Assistant District Attorney Emily Auletta asked Hon. Edward McLaughlin to hike Rizk's bail from $30,000 to $50,000, but the judge declined after Rizk's lawyer described his client as a high-achieving Brooklyn College graduate who is not a flight risk because he has no passport.
New court documents released Tuesday reveal Farsakh denied using any weapon.
"Officer, everything that I did was with my fist," court documents say he told 6th Precinct officers. "I never used no weapon."
Farsakh also claimed the fight began because of a racial slur made by a member of McCarron's group.
"Everything started when they call us f---ing Arab," he said, according to court documents.
Sources told DNAinfo.com New York that Farsakh, Rizk and friends approached McCarron and a group of his friends who had attended Providence College about 5 a.m. Jan 13. A war of words ensued and the Providence bunch tried to defuse the situation by walking away. But Farsakh's group wouldn't retreat, the sources said.
"We are going to f--- you up," one of the alleged attackers said to McCarron and friends, sources said.
Farsakh's group then popped the trunk of a car they rode in and pulled out a bat and other weapons, which Farsakh and his friends used to pummel McCarron and his friends outside 95 MacDougal St., police said.
Neither McCarron, an Andover, Mass. resident who graduated from Providence College in 2011, nor his family responded to inquiries about his condition.
All three beating suspects are due back in court April 16.