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Charger’s Attackers Get Work Furlough, Fines

Three men who beat up San Diego Charger defensive lineman Joe Phillips last year in Mission Beach were sentenced Tuesday to one year in a work furlough program.

David Hanna, 23; Scott Stewart, 25, and Brett Dost, 22, were also placed on three years’ probation and fined $250 each.

They were ordered to report to a private work furlough center on separate days in August and September. Each will be able to report to his construction company job Monday through Friday, but will return to the locked center at night and on weekends.

Phillips, 27, was in the courtroom as San Diego Superior Court Judge Thomas Whelan handed down the sentencings.

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“I’ve seen no remorse,” he told the judge.

The 6-foot-5, 300-pound nose tackle told Whelan that he wondered how someone weaker than himself could have handled the Sept. 26 attack outside a Mission Beach restaurant.

“They’d probably be dead,” the judge said.

“I agree,” Phillips said.

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Phillips and a female acquaintance were walking outside the restaurant when the three men approached them and kicked Phillips with steel-toed boots. He suffered a broken nose, fractured skull, three broken ribs and other broken facial bones. The injuries sidelined him for the rest of the season.

Phillips told reporters that he was kicked 50 to 60 times. Insults were yelled at the woman, and she was knocked down but not injured.

Phillips has filed a civil suit against the three men.

The judge ordered the defendants not to associate with each other while on probation and to abstain from alcohol.

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The men pleaded guilty to assault with a deadly weapon several months ago, and, in a plea-bargain agreement, the sentence was limited to one year in custody instead of state prison. Whelan also ordered the defendants to pay Phillips damages for his injuries, but the amount will be set at a later hearing.

The motive for the attack has never been fully explained by the defendants, who said they did not know who Phillips was at the time. Phillips has maintained that he did nothing to provoke it.


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