Jury Clears Man After Fight on Boardwalk
A jury deliberated 45 minutes before acquitting a Middletown Township man of weapons charges stemming from a July 1994 fight on the Seaside Heights boardwalk.
David Beller, 20, of Harvey Avenue in the Lincroft section of Middletown, was found innocent Tuesday of possession of a weapon for an unlawful purpose, unlawful possession of a handgun, resisting arrest and two counts of aggravated assault.
He was arrested about 2:30 a.m. outside a boardwalk sports memorabilia store he owns, after he intervened in a fight.
Witnesses, including Beller, testified that five to six people were beating Beller's friend, Louis A. Bamonte.
Assistant Prosecutor Joseph F. Mackolin contended that Beller went to the rear of his store and retrieved an unloaded BB gun and pointed it at the combatants, but first he pointed it at a bystander, William Gray.
Beller, denied pointing the gun at Gray.
After the fight broke up, Beller put the gun in a closet in the store, Mackolin said. But when police arrived, they brought Beller into the back room to get the gun, he started struggling with the officers and had to be subdued, Mackolin said.
Defense lawyer Steven D. Cahn of Piscataway township argued that Beller never struggled with police. He said police assaulted Beller in the rear of the store.
Witnesses testified that when Beller emerged from the rear of the store with police, his face was bruised.
Superior Court Judge Vincent J. Grasso presided over the trial.
This article first appeared in The Asbury Park Press, Thursday October 19, 1995.
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