A Penobscot County man claims in a lawsuit that the former owner of a Southwest Harbor bar fractured his skull in an assault two years ago and then deleted video of the incident from a security system.
Anthony Vincent, 31, sued Jose O. Feliciano Sr., 52, of Southwest Harbor on Friday in Penobscot County Superior Court over an alleged attack on July 11, 2020, at Joey’s Place Sports Lounge. Feliciano no longer owns the bar, and it is closed, according to Christopher Largay, Vincent’s Bangor attorney.
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Vincent suffered a fractured skull in the alleged assault and has been unable to work regularly, the complaint said. He has deficits in his thinking, processing and speech, Largay said.
The former restaurant worker on Mount Desert Island is seeking unspecified damages for past and future medical bills, lost wages and future income, pain and suffering, emotional harm and permanent injury.
Two years ago, Vincent was in Joey’s Place drinking with a friend, the complaint says. Feliciano allegedly was handing out free alcoholic drinks to patrons, including Vincent and his friend, and drinking himself.
After midnight, Vincent and his friend began leaving the bar, but Feliciano began shouting at them as they did, the complaint said. When Vincent tried to speak with the bar owner, Feliciano allegedly was “very aggressive towards Vincent in manner, words and actions.”
As Vincent backed away from Feliciano, he allegedly tripped over a flowerpot. Vincent was getting up when Feliciano struck him in the head, knocking him out and causing his head to strike the pavement, according to the complaint.
The lawsuit also claims that Feliciano kept other patrons from immediately calling the police and for an ambulance. When officers did arrive, Vincent was bleeding from his head and ear. He was incoherent and could not answer questions, the complaint said.
Vincent was transported to Mount Desert Island Hospital in Bar Harbor, then transferred to Northern Light Easten Maine Medical Center in Bangor where he was diagnosed with a brain injury.
Police never charged Feliciano with assault or other crime, according to the complaint. But Southwest Harbor selectmen in January 2021 sent a letter to the state’s Bureau of Alcoholic Beverages and Lottery Operations explaining that it had refused to renew Feliciano’s liquor license due to the alleged incident involving Vincent and two others that same summer, the Mount Desert Islander reported.
Feliciano, who has not yet been served with the complaint, did not immediately respond to a request for comment. No lawyer has put in an appearance on his behalf, according to information on file at the Penobscot Judicial Center.