Lawmen Plead No Contest in Fight : Justice: One S.D. police officer, 2 sheriff's deputies, 1 other were charged in beating of fans at a Padre baseball game.


Three law enforcement officers and another man have pleaded no contest to misdemeanor battery counts stemming from a brawl at a Padre baseball game last summer.

The San Diego city attorney's office charged a San Diego police officer, two sheriff's deputies and another man last October in connection with the July 26 beating of Brian Gowen, 20, and Chuck Depreker, 21, at San Diego Jack Murphy Stadium.

But, in pleading no contest in court Wednesday, the four men did not admit guilt to the charges. Instead, San Diego Officer John Autolino and Sheriff's Deputies Richard Logan and Richard J. Janickey each agreed to pay a $1,000 fine and to perform 10 days of public service work.

Eugene W. Stone, the fourth man, agreed to pay a $500 fine and to perform 20 days of public service work.

Logan also agreed to pay restitution for any of Gowen's medical expenses not covered by insurance, according to the city attorney's office. A hearing has been set for March 3 to determine the sum.

After the charges were filed, Logan and Janickey were placed on administrative duties, but have since returned to their regular duties, Sheriff's Department spokesman Glenn Revell said. The Sheriff's Department performed an internal investigation, but no findings have been released.

San Diego police spokesman Dave Cohen said Autolino, who remains on patrol duty, will now face an internal investigation by the Police Department.

In January, Gowen, an Oceanside resident who is a junior at Colorado State University, filed a damage claim against the city and the county of San Diego for $100,000 plus $2,500 in medical expenses in connection with the beating.

In his claim, Gowen said he suffered severe emotional distress, a fractured eye socket, and neck and back injuries.

Gowen also claimed he was unreasonably detained by San Diego police investigators who questioned him after the beating, delaying his medical treatment.

Jon Hollmann, Gowen's attorney, said the city rejected Gowen's claim, and if the county does the same, his client can file a civil suit in Superior Court.

In an earlier interview, Gowen and Depreker said the fight started after the four men threw a full cup of beer at them and Gowen returned fire with a half-cup of his own.

The four men were rooting for the New York Mets. Gowen and Depreker said they were rooting for the Padres.

After the beer was exchanged, Gowen said, the four men grabbed hold of him and began punching. Eyewitnesses corroborated that account.

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