Chef found guilty in jealousy-fuelled brawl

| 13/02/2014

(CNS): The executive sous chef at a local restaurant in Camana Bay has been found guilty of wounding after he broke a man’s jaw during a brawl at a gas station on the West Bay Road last year. Visiting judge Justice Malcolm Swift found that Michael Joseph Fischetti had punched Edenis Miguel Rives hard enough to knock him out and break his jaw, even though the man was trying to get away. Fischetti was convicted following a three day judge-alone trial before Justice Swift last week in connection with the incident, which took place in the early hours of 16 March last year, when the jealous chef over-reacted after he saw his girlfriend embrace male friends at the gas station in greeting.

The judge described the meeting, which was seen by the court on the gas station’s  CCTV footage, as “quite harmless and normal” but Fischetti, who was waiting outside in a taxi for his girlfriend, didn’t see it that way and told the police after his arrest that the man was “grabbing on my girlfriend”. The judge said the defendant completely misread the situation and was provoked into a jealous reaction. He quickly made his way inside, where he confronted the man he was later to punch so hard he broke his jaw.

“I am completely satisfied that Mr Fischetti brought this whole unhappy situation about andwas entirely responsible for causing the brawl which ensued,” the judge said in his verdict.

The men all began arguing in the gas station as Fischetti was said by witnesses to have hurled allegations at the two men who had greeted his girlfriend and threatened to kill them. This triggered a fight as the complainant’s cousin punched the chef; the men and others around them piled outside the gas station store, while the melee continued both in front of and away from TV cameras, with the men throwing punches.

At some point, however, the CCTV records Rives backing away from Fischetti, as the chef ran across the forecourt towards him. The fight continued out of the view of the CCTV but according to witnesses Fischetti pursued the complainant and finally caught up with him to land the critical blow, which is said to have knocked Rives out cold and broken his jaw.

Although Fishcetti had claimed self-defence during his police interview, he did not give evidence from the dock, relying on the account he gave after his arrest that he had been punched by people in the fight and he was hitting out at anyone to defend himself.

However, given the CCTV evidence and that of other witnesses, the judge disagreed. He found that Fischetti provoked the fight with his jealous reaction and, despite being hit himself,his pursuit of Rives across the forecourt could not amount to self-defence as the danger was over. A threat no longer exists, the judge noted, "when the person is running away.”

“I saw the defendant on the CCTV chasing a retreating complainant. He was in hot pursuit,” the judge said. “I am satisfied that by this time the defendant had lost his self-control and was intending to hit the complainant,” he added as he delivered his guilty verdict.

Category: Crime

Comments (11)

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  1. Anonymous says:

    All the chef I've ever known were hot-heads

  2. Anonymous says:

    This dude is obviously a future incident waiting to happen. Time to say goodbye.

  3. Anonymous says:

    Where did he cook? Wouldn’t want to send back any food.

  4. Anonymous says:

    Sounds like an insecure or dangerous fellah, maybe both. 

  5. Anonymous says:

    He needs to get Rabe's lawyer and appeal.

  6. Anonymous says:

    I saw a rooster chasing a hen yesterday.  Yep, trying to cross the road after her and almost got hit by two cars.  

  7. WillYaListen! says:

     

    Always a woman. Men are idiots.

  8. Anonymous says:

    What was the sentence?

  9. Anonymous says:

    Lock him up, then deport his A$$. 

  10. Anonymous says:

    If you can't take the heat………