An Oberlin man who severely injured two women in a New London bar brawl was released early from prison Wednesday.
After being imprisoned for two months of his 15-month sentence, Alan J. Revercomb Jr., 40, was granted judicial release. He will remain in custody at the Huron County Jail until he is interviewed for possible acceptance into a community-based corrections facility (CBCF). Defendants typically spend between four to six months in a CBCF, a form of prison which focuses on education and substance abuse treatment.
"The state adamantly objects to judicial release," Huron County Assistant Prosecutor Dina Shenker said during a passionate speech to Huron County Common Pleas Judge Jim Conway.
"He was not defending himself against the women he hit," Shenker said. "He stated he looked at her and then hit her. There is no self-defense there."
Eva Gorby, the victim's advocate coordinator for the prosecutor's office, spoke on behalf of the three victims, none of whom were able to attend Wednesday's hearing. She said the women were very opposed to Revercomb's early release from prison.
Revercomb pleaded guilty Jan. 28 to an amended count of aggravated assault in exchange for the state dismissing one charge of felonious assault. One woman who sustained bruises to her head wasn't covered in the original felonious assault charges.
One woman was hit so hard she sustained a "split" jaw, Gorby said.
"She has nerve damage (and) broken teeth. ... She had to drink out of a straw for a while," Gorby said.
The second victim had to have stitches in her lip.
"I never meant to hurt anyone that night," Revercomb told the judge.
The defendant said he was attacked by a "mob" and at one point, ran about a half-mile away from the bar, with the women reportedly leading the way. Revercomb said he wished that September 2009 incident would have ended differently.
"I had no choice when I had to fight this crowd," he said.
"Innocent victims don't participate in a brawl," Huron County Assistant Public Defender David Longo said.
Revercomb's mother, who was pleased her son was released early from prison, said her son "did everything he could to avoid the confrontation." She and Longo said other people started the fight, but the women who ended up as victims later joined the brawl.
"My understanding (was) there were three or four police departments called in to break it up," Revercomb's mother said.
While in prison, Revercomb was "making good use of his time," Longo said early in the hearing, but didn't elaborate.
Conway, while announcing his decision, said the defendant seems to be a good candidate for community control sanctions and placed him on three years of intensively supervised probation. He also ordered Revercomb to continue paying almost $1,300 in restitution for the victims' medical bills.
Revercomb, once he's released from the CBCF, must undergo alcohol and substance abuse counseling, find and maintain full-time employment and submit to random urinalysis.
Conway also said he didn't appreciate Shenker making allegations of felonious assault when the state earlier agreed to a plea deal for aggravated assault. The charge includes language that says the victims played a part in the brawl.