Motorcycle club officers plead not guilty in downtown New London stabbing
New London - A man whose intestines were bulging from his abdomen after being stabbed during a brawl last month at a downtown motorcycle club identified his attackers as two high-ranking club members, according to the arrest warrant for one of the men.
Juan Baptista-Roman, 31, and his brother, Jose Roman, 34, pleaded not guilty in New London Superior Court Monday to charges of first-degree assault and carrying a dangerous weapon. Each is held in lieu of a $400,000 bond.
Unsealed Monday, the arrest warrant for Roman, the president of the WildStyle Riders Motorcycle Club, details the Sept. 22 early-morning altercation inside and in the back parking lot of 130 Bank St., the former club hangout. Baptista-Roman, who police say is the club's vice president, is identified, along with his brother, as one of the lead assailants in sparking the brawl that injured four. Among those was Anthony Swift, 26, of New London, who was taken to Yale-New Haven Hospital after suffering a large cut on his face and several stab wounds to the torso.
In an interview at the hospital, Swift told police that after the stabbing "he thought that the knife was sticking out of his abdomen. He reached to pull it out and realized it was his intestine protruding from his abdomen." He also had a collapsed lung.
Much of the details of the fight came from witnesses, including Swift and another victim Jairo Perez, 28. One witness provided police with three cellphone videos of the brawl. In one clip, five men assaulted Swift, police said, including Roman, who held a knife during the attack.
Roman turned himself in to police Sept. 29. His brother did the same the following day. After speaking with police about the incident, brothers Robert Marin, 22, and Donte Marin, 21, turned themselves in to police Oct. 11. Each is charged with first-degree assault and breach of peace. Details of their involvement are unknown.
City officials have since shut down the clubhouse because it did not have the permit to operate a member-only club in the downtown business district.
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