One man, 25-year-old Matt Fortese, is battling for his life, and Baltimore Police have charged two more men after a fight Wednesday at the Orioles-Nationals game.
Fortese, a Yankees fan, wore his favorite team's hat to Camden Yards. He was on his second date with Taylor Queen. Throughout the game, Gregory Fleischman, 22, and 21-year-old Michael Bell continuously heckled Fortese. Around the sixth inning, one of the men threw a beer at the couple. According to police, when Fortese went to confront the pair, Fleischman punched him in his head. He fell over the railing and onto the concrete, five feet below. The Baltimore Sun has the story:
Fortese's brother, Jimmy, said the family is devastated.
"It's very serious," Jimmy Fortese, 30, said. "They're not saying he's out of the woods yet. They tell us we have to wait and see."
What happened after the assault was providential, Fortese's parents said Friday.
Nathan Steelman, an off-duty state trooper and a childhood friend of Fortese's from Hagerstown, was standing nearby in the left field seats. Steelman and Fortese hadn't seen each other in years but had run into one another at the game and had spoken for about five minutes to catch up.
"You just heard it," Steelman, 26, said Friday of the commotion. "I rushed over, and I realized it was Matt. He wasn't breathing. He was unconscious. Blood was coming from his nose."
He said Fortese had gone as long as 45 seconds without breathing. Steelman, relying on basic emergency medical training he received as a soldier deployed to Iraq and Afghanistan, stuck his finger in Fortese's mouth and removed a wad of chewing tobacco that had blocked his airway. Fortese drew a breath.
Fleischman was charged with first-degree assault, and he and Bell both were charged with second-degree assault and disorderly conduct. They were released on $50,000 bail yesterday.
Photo Credit: Getty
h/t to Pete