Judge lowers bail for man accused in Lebanon bar fight

Posted Feb. 22, 2012, at 9:04 a.m.
Last modified Feb. 22, 2012, at 9:24 a.m.

LEBANON, Maine — One of two men charged with beating another man unconscious at a local bar last month was in York County Superior Court Tuesday, where a judge lowered his bail.

Jason Mowry, 33, of Acton was arrested Feb. 10 after he turned himself in to police. He was charged with a Class B felony count of aggravated assault in connection with the barroom brawl at Trains Tavern on Jan. 27 that sent a 44-year-old Maine man to the hospital.

His bail was set at $50,000 cash after his arrest.

In court Tuesday, Mowry’s defense attorney, Darren Locke, asked the judge to lower Mowry’s bail to closer to $2,500 with a pretrial contract, saying that while his client does have a criminal record, he is not a flight risk and Mowry’s co-defendant, Gilbert Perez, was given a much lower bail and is already out in the community.

“He has a fiance, he works, and is not a flight risk,” Locke said of Mowry on Tuesday. Locke said that, while his client is accused of punching the victim and a second individual at the bar that night, it was Perez, who is accused of kicking him in the head after the man had fallen to the ground, who likely caused the majority of the victim’s injuries.

The state prosecutor, Kent Avery, disagreed and asked the judge to continue Mowry’s bail at $50,000 cash, calling the man a public safety threat.

“This was an unprovoked attack that occurred when Mowry felt [the victim] was looking at him funny,” Avery said.

The fight caused serious injuries to the man attacked, Avery said. A photograph of the victim after the alleged assault showed him with a broken eye socket and an injured eye, currently rolled back into his head, and a broken jaw and cheek that have already required surgery and will likely need more.

The second victim injured in the incident, who was allegedly struck by Mowry, suffered chipped teeth and a concussion, Avery said.

Avery said Mowry’s criminal history includes charges of domestic violence assault in 2010, convictions of robbery and burglary, three violations of probation, numerous drug charges, as well as charges of criminal mischief, disorderly conduct and two witness tampering charges that were later dropped.

In this case, Avery said, Mowry tried to keep information from the authorities, allegedly telling a Trains Tavern bartender not to call police.

“Quite frankly, I think the bail should be higher,” he said.

Locke emphasized that his client has a steady job and a stable family life and he turned himself in to police when told he was facing a charge.

Judge Paul A. Fritzsche issued an order lowering Mowry’s bail, saying there are a growing number of cases in the state in which bail commissioners have not done a good enough job of making independent decisions and assign the exact bail police request.

Still, Fritzsche did say Mowry has a significant criminal record and the current charge against him includes a “substantial amount of violence.”

His bail was lowered to match his co-defendant’s, at $10,000 cash, with a pretrial contract to be made between Mowry and the court due to his record.

© 2012 the Foster’s Daily Democrat

Distributed by MCT Information Services

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