Wednesday, April 11, 2012

Felony charged in street fracas

Hailey man faces aggravated-battery charge


By TERRY SMITH
Express Staff Writer

Thomas Jefferson Richard Black

A 26-year-old Hailey man has been charged with aggravated battery, a felony, for allegedly punching another man in the face early in the morning of Saturday, March 31, on the sidewalk in front of the Casino Club in downtown Ketchum.

Thomas Jefferson Richard Black was formally charged with the crime at an initial court appearance April 2 in Blaine County Magistrate Court. He was released from custody later that day after posting $5,000 bond.

According to court records, Judge R. Ted Israel denied Black's application for appointment of a public defender, apparently because Black has full-time employment. A preliminary hearing was scheduled for April 10.

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A probable-cause affidavit filed by Ketchum police Sgt. Skip Liddle identifies the alleged victim as Jason Haase, no age or address available. Liddle wrote that Haase was evaluated at the St. Luke's Wood River emergency room, where it was determined that he suffered a broken nose and a chipped tooth.

"Without reconstructive surgery, the injury Haase received is likely to result in permanent disfigurement," Liddle wrote.

According to the report, the parties to the altercation, which occurred shortly after 2 a.m., had different stories as to what happened. Liddle wrote that Haase told him the attack was unprovoked, while Black reported that Haase challenged him to a fight.

Liddle wrote that Black was arrested later Saturday morning after being interviewed at the Ketchum police office.

Terry Smith: tsmith@mtexpress.com




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