South Jersey trio charged in assault outside Pat's, Geno's

Posted: November 06, 2013

A TRIO OF Gloucester County men were slapped with assault charges yesterday for an alleged brutal beating in which police say they used their fists and bike locks to pummel two men after a spat over sidewalk space at a popular South Philly street corner.

The beating Sunday morning apparently ensued after the South Jersey men - identified as Ryan Dorney, 25, of Franklinville; Christopher Eaton, 28, of Sewell; and Antonio Regalbuto, 24, of Clayton - had a heated exchange with two men on Passyunk Avenue near 9th Street over passing each other on the sidewalk, police said.

"Apparently it was just over who was going to walk by whom in what manner," South Detective Division Capt. Larry Nodiff said of the fracas.

Police were called to the busy corner anchored by Pat's King of Steaks and Geno's Steaks at 2:10 a.m., and found the two victims, ages 23 and 24, on the ground with lacerations and contusions to their heads, and bloodstains on the sidewalk, Nodiff said.

Witnesses described the beating and told police that the trio of men had picked up the victims' bike locks and used them and their fists to pummel the pair before fleeing in a Nissan with New Jersey tags.

"This is obviously a horrific beating," Nodiff said.

Police broadcast a description of the car, and a Delaware River Port Authority supervisor spotted it crossing the Walt Whitman Bridge into the Garden State about 4 a.m., Nodiff said. The DRPA officer stopped the car, and the three men were arrested without further incident.

Yesterday, Dorney, Eaton and Regalbuto were each charged with two counts of aggravated assault, criminal conspiracy, reckless endangerment and related offenses. Dorney was held on $50,000 bail, and Eaton and Regalbuto were each held on $25,000 bail. The trio are set to appear in Philadelphia court again Nov. 19 for a preliminary hearing.

The two injured men were treated at Thomas Jefferson University Hospital for head contusions and possible concussions and released later Sunday, Nodiff said.

"This isn't the first time residents of New Jersey have come to South Philadelphia and acted in a brutal manner," he added.

In October 2012, a North Jersey man was charged with aggravated assault after a brawl between two wedding parties at the Sheraton hotel in Society Hill.

In January 2012, after the Flyers faced the New York Rangers in the Winter Classic in South Philly, video surfaced of a group of Rangers fans brawling with Flyers fans outside the cheesesteak shops. After that fight, an off-duty cop from North Jersey was hospitalized and a Philadelphia man was sentenced to jail time. Others involved in the fight were not charged or badly injured.

"I don't understand what their mission is," Nodiff said. "But obviously, we're not going to tolerate it."


On Twitter: @morganzalot

Blog: PhillyConfidential.com

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