VIRGINIA BEACH, Va. (WAVY) – A bar fight in Virginia Beach last August left Jonathan Moore seriously injured. Two weeks later, he died from those injuries, and the other man involved in that altercation, Wesley Horbal, would be charged with voluntary manslaughter.
On Thursday, Feb. 16, Horbal appeared in court for a preliminary hearing that saw testimony from two witnesses. Surveillance video of the altercation at the bar was also presented in court.
On the night of August 11, Horbal and a group of coworkers were finishing their last round of drinks at CP Shuckers in Virginia Beach before heading to the next bar, when a glass shattered near their table.
Christopher Wilson, a coworker who described himself and Horbal as “pretty good buds,” told the court that he initially thought someone had fallen, or simply dropped the glass. The group quickly realized what had actually happened, however.
The first clip of video shown to the court was taken from a camera mounted over the patio where Horbal’s group was seated. Moore is seen getting up from his table and casually tossing a beer glass across the frame towards them — apparently unprovoked. He then quickly walks out to the parking lot with a bottle of beer still in his hand.
Seconds later, the video shows Horbal get up from the table and follow Moore outside.
Wilson testified that Moore initially didn’t respond to Horbal’s words in the parking lot. At one point, however, he said Moore swung the bottle in his hand at Horbal. One of the attorneys clarified to the court that the movement was like that of an “overhand baseball pitch-type swing.” Wilson called it “very immediate.”
Horbal was able to avoid the bottle and the two men began physically fighting, punching each other repeatedly. A short time after it began, the surveillance video showed that Horbal grabbed ahold of Moore’s arm and yank it downward, sending his body to the pavement. Horbal then kicked him a single time. Moore did not appear to move after that.
“Since he went to the ground, he kinda just laid there,” Wilson testified.
“The only movement that I saw was his hand moving,” Detective Anna Webb of the Virginia Beach Police Department told the court.
That’s when Wilson said he stepped in to get Horbal out of the fight. The group then packed up and moved onto the next bar, unaware of Moore’s physical state. Moore would be taken off life support a couple weeks later.
Wilson told the court that his group had had no previous interactions or issues with Moore before he threw the glass.
“At one point he was literally standing in front of me in line to get beer,” he said.
The judge certified the charges over to a grand jury, which will meet next month to decide if a trial can move forward.
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