Updated Thu, Mar 6, 2014 10:27 am
The Ohio University fraternity member who pleaded guilty to charges connected to the stabbing of a rival frat member responded to a lawsuit filed by the victim, claiming he is not at fault in the lawsuit.
Michael Gallas, of Athens, filed a lawsuit in Athens County Common Pleas Court on Feb. 12, asking for more than $25,000 to pay for medical bills and other expenses incurred after a group of Ohio University students attacked him, according to previous Athens Messenger reporting.
Gallas names Patrick Barry, Mario Jenkins, Gabriel Sirkin and five unidentified individuals in the suit.
The lawsuit asks the court to award compensatory and punitive damages in an amount in excess of $25,000, plus interest.
Barry, 21, was charged criminally in the attack on Gallas, which occurred in February 2013, and pleaded guilty in October to aggravated assault, a fourth-degree felony. His plea was held in abeyance and he entered a diversion program as part of a plea agreement with the Athens County Prosecutor's Office. He was originally charged with felonious assault.
Barry was a member of the Sigma Pi fraternity when he used a broken glass bottle to stab Gallas three times in the midsection, according to previous Messenger reporting. Gallas was a member of the Pi Kappa Alpha fraternity.
During Barry's criminal case, he was ordered to pay $4,876 in restitution, as payment for medical bills.
In response to the lawsuit, Barry argues that Gallas' "injuries and damages, if any, were caused or brought about by the negligence of (Gallas) and/or a third person over whom (Barry) had absolutely no control..."
Barry also argued that the lawsuit is barred by a statute of limitations and that the court "lacks jurisdiction over the subject matter."
Gallas was hit in the face by Jenkins, causing a broken tooth, and while Gallas was recovering, Sirkin gave a beer bottle to Barry, who broke the bottle and "proceeded to repeatedly stab" Gallas, Hurlbert alleges.
The actions of Jenkins and Barry "constitute malice," the lawsuit stated and all parties should be considered negligent.
"By organizing friends and associates Mario Jenkins created a mob seeking to harm ... Gallas and, as such, the injuries to Gallas were a foreseeable consequence," Hurlbert wrote.
Sirkin was negligent and in violation of the law, according to the lawsuit, for possessing a beer bottle outside a liquor establishment and giving and/or allowing Barry to take the bottle "knowing that Barry was likely to use it as a weapon in attempting to harm" Gallas.