It could up being an ugly sight: a judge is deciding whether to move forward with a trial against the pair accused of beating Bryan Stow in the Dodger Stadium parking lot on Opening Day 2011.
You’re aware of the story: San Francisco Giants fan Stow was jumped after the Dodgers/Giants opening match in the Dodger Stadium parking lot; he ended up in a coma and is still undergoing rehabilitation. Louie Sanchez and Marvin Norwood were eventually arrested for their role in the altercation; Norwood confessed to his mother that he was involved.
Superior Court Judge George Lomeli is holding a preliminary hearing to determine whether the pair should be tried in a full court proceeding; a tape of the confession was played during the hearing.
One sad aspect to the hearing — there was a full accounting of how bad things had gotten in terms of fan behavior in the Dodger Stadium stands:
Two more witnesses who attended the March 31, 2011, game told of being bothered by Sanchez, who was throwing peanuts and spraying soda on a woman in the bleachers.
Pictures that witness Marc Lu took from his seat were projected on a large screen clearly showed Sanchez sitting next to Lu’s group. At the end of the game, Sanchez sprayed a bottle of soda, said Lu, who was wearing a Giants T-shirt at the game.
“We were kind of staring at him in disbelief. He was facing us, kind of staring us down, looked like he was ready to fight.” said Lu, who said Norwood was with Sanchez.
Prosecutors called five more witnesses who had seats near Sanchez and Norwood at the game. They told of the peanut-pelting and said Sanchez was drunk and dousing Giants fans with soda.
Apparently Sanchez wasn’t the only one: Norwood admitted later there was a number of fights in the parking lot after the game.
Any reminder of this sad chapter in Dodgers history — even though there’s a new ownership with the team, as this incident was a prime reason for MLB working to force Frank McCourt from the owner’s suite — won’t be a good thing for the Dodgers. Attendance at Dodger Stadium is up this season (some 38,639 fans a game, up from 36,236 fans a game last season for a 6 percent hike), but we’re not sensing a whole lot of buzz around the new ownership, which has been low-key, to say the least. At some point Stan Kasten and Magic Johnson will need to step forward and make more of a PR statement/impact on how things are different at Dodger Stadium.
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