Charges against bouncer accused in deadly Holbrook bar beating upgraded to manslaughter
A bouncer from North Bellmore accused in a deadly bar beating was back in court on Thursday.
David Cruz remains free after posting bond, despite charges against him being upgraded from assault to manslaughter.
Police say on Aug. 21, Cruz was working as a bouncer at Tailgaters in Holbrook.
In court, prosecutors say Cruz and 32-year-old Jake Scott got into an argument. According to prosecutors, Cruz covered up security cameras, punched Scott in the head and continued to beat him.
Cruz then allegedly left the scene but was arrested three days after the incident.
Scott was taken to the hospital and put into a medically induced coma, suffering from a brain bleed and skull fracture. Scott died on Sept. 1 from his injuries.
In court, the judge said he could not change the recommended bail because of recent changes to New York law and apologized to the victim's family for that.
Many of Scott's friends and family were in court wearing shirts with his photo on it.
The family's lawyer released a statement saying in part, "Obviously, we are all disappointed that this violent and dangerous individual is out. We do appreciate the work of the DA's office in elevating the charge. Nonetheless, it should be known that Jake was a gentle soul and is sorely missed by his family and friends. Nothing will ever bring Jake back."
The prosecution also detailed that Cruz has a lengthy criminal history.
Those who live in Holbrook were alarmed that Cruz was back out on the streets while facing a manslaughter charge.
"Someone that killed somebody shouldn't be out on bail," says Greg Visintin.
Cruz must now wear a GPS ankle monitor and be home every night by 5 p.m.
Scott’s next court date is set for Oct. 18. He is facing 25 years in prison if convicted.
A spokesperson for Tailgaters released a statement, saying: "To provide a high level to our customers and employees, we had retained the security services of First Choice Protect Company in June 2022. The tragedy that resulted from the actions of one of their two security personnel was horrific. Our thoughts and prayers go out to the family and loved ones of the young man who passed."