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Man critical after fight over ‘beer money’


MELLENVILLE—A 25-year-old man is in critical condition at the Albany Medical Center after being repeatedly struck in the head with the butt end of a BB gun rifle.
Livingston State Police said they responded to a 911 call at an apartment in the hamlet on Route 217 in the early morning hours of June 17.

An investigation revealed that Donald Wallace, who lives in the apartment, was in the kitchen fighting with a neighbor.
The neighbor’s brother, William A. Brooks Jr, 19, intervened in the fight and hit Mr. Wallace several times in the head with the butt end of a BB gun rifle, police say.
The Philmont and Greenport rescue squads took Mr. Wallace with serious head injuries to Columbia Memorial Hospital in Hudson.
He was later taken to the Albany Medical Center due to the severity of his injuries, police say.
Mr. Brooks, who is on parole, was charged with first degree assault, a class B felony and third degree criminal possession of a weapon, a class D felony.
Arraigned in Livingston Court before Justice Robert Moore, Mr. Brooks was sent to the Columbia County Jail without bail.
Police say there had been a beer drinking party at a neighboring residence earlier and that the initial fight began as an argument over “beer money,” less than $20.

Mr. Wallace’s three-year-old child was in the apartment at the time of the beating, Columbia County District Attorney Beth Cozzolino said in televised reports.


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