Posted On:5/01/2008 10:59am
By Jim Dooley
Advertiser Staff Writer
What began with a few shoves in a Waikiki nightclub ended in a case of attempted murder, prosecutors say, and a 29-year-old man permanently confined to a wheelchair by head injuries.
On trial in Circuit Court is Ryan Carrillo, 25, accused of throwing a "superman punch" to Jesse Greenwood's head last February on the sidewalk outside Moose McGillicuddy's Pub & Cafe.
Carrillo is charged with second-degree attempted murder of Greenwood. Both men were visiting from California when they became involved in an altercation inside the night spot that later spilled to the street outside.
Deputy Prosecuting Attorney Christopher Van Marter said in his opening statement that Carrillo launched "a very violent and cowardly attack" on Greenwood by running at him from behind, jumping in the air and punching him on the left temple.
Greenwood, 29, was knocked unconscious by the blow and fell to the pavement, striking his head on the curb, said Van Marter.
He suffered multiple skull fractures and "catastrophic brain injury" that led to numerous surgeries including a partial lobotomy, Van Marter told Circuit Judge Richard Pollack in the non-jury trial.
Defense attorney Michael Green said Greenwood was extremely drunk and had caused problems in Moose McGillicuddy's, bothering Carrillo and his friends, including at least one woman.
"This guy was a mean drunk," Green said of Greenwood.
Greenwood was escorted from the premises by security personnel, then allowed back in to pay his bar tab, then once again escorted outside, Green said.
When Carrillo and his friends emerged from the nightclub, Greenwood approached them on the street and another scuffle ensued, with one of Carrillo's friends grabbing Greenwood and pulling him to the ground.
Carrillo "had had enough and decided to punch or tackle this guy once," said Green. "There was never any intent to kill anyone."
Greenwood's injuries are "terrible and tragic," but Carrillo at most is guilty of assault, Green said.
Van Marter played surveillance videos of the initial scuffle inside the nightclub and portions of the later attack on the street.
Inside, Greenwood can be seen approaching Carrillo's friends on the dance floor and was shoved several times before security personnel intervened.
Outside, Greenwood once again approached Carrillo and his friends, lighting a cigarette before at least two of Carrillo's friends pulled him to the ground.
As security personnel once again intervened and stood Greenwood up, Carrillo crossed Lewers Street and circled around the entrance to Moose McGillicuddy's, taking off his shirt in the process, Van Marter told the judge as the video played in court.
Carrillo is seen rushing bare-chested at Greenwood, leaping at him. The actual contact between the two men was obscured by a telephone booth or kiosk on the sidewalk. In the video, security personnel and others run to and from the area where Greenwood lay unconscious on the street.
The trial continues tomorrow.
Green said much of the testimony will come from medical experts and will concern the level of intoxication of both men, as well as the injuries suffered by Greenwood.
"It will be a war of doctors," Green told the judge.
Greenwood and his family have filed a civil suit against Carrillo and others, including the owners of the nightclub.
The defendants have denied liability for Greenwood's injuries. That case is scheduled to go to trial in July.
Posted On:5/15/2010 12:43pm
Man gets 1-year term in assault
A 25-year-old California man was sentenced yesterday to a year in jail for landing what a prosecutor described as a "Superman punch" on an unsuspecting man in Waikiki last year, causing brain damage and permanent disabilities.
Ryan Carrillo was in Hawaii to attend last year's Pro Bowl when he ran up from behind Jesse Greenwood, jumped in the air and landed a punch on his way back down to the back of Greenwood's head outside Moose McGillycuddy's Pub & Cafe on Lewers Street in Waikiki on Feb. 12, 2007.
Greenwood fell to the ground and hit his head on the pavement. Deputy City Prosecutor Chris Van Marter said Greenwood, 30, also of California, suffered permanent brain damage and is permanently disabled.
Carrillo was charged with attempted murder. But following a nonjury trial, Circuit Judge Richard Pollack found him guilty in May of first-degree assault. Pollack handed Carrillo the one-year jail term and five years' probation yesterday. He also ordered Carrillo to make $13,470 restitution.
Van Marter said Greenwood has so far incurred more than $800,000 in medical expenses and will likely need round-the-clock care for the rest of his life estimated to cost $6 million.
Greenwood and his family are suing Carrillo and Moose McGillycuddy's, where Greenwood and Carrillo were drinking before the assault.
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