BUFFALO, N.Y. (WIVB)– Testimony was heard from Adam O’Shei, Friday, in the felony hearing against bar manager, Jeffrey Basil.
O’Shei was at Mollys Pub the night Bill Sager was assaulted. O’Shei, an off-duty Buffalo Police officer, was working security at the bar.
His testimony was good enough for City Court Judge Joseph Fiorella to send Basil back to jail and the charges sent to the grand jury.
O’Shei testified, “[Basil] walked in and said ‘I’m on a 24 hour bender.’ He said I’m all hopped up, I just took a couple of Xanax, boys we’re partying tonight.”
The off-duty officer said Basil tried to get him to take shots and other drinks. He admitted he went inside, while working security, to have a couple of drinks.
Although he turned away for a second, O’Shei said it was Basil who pushed Tech Sgt. Bill Sager down the stairs around 2:00 am.
“I saw Mr. Basil shove Mr. Sager off the top landing and Mr. Sager flew down the stairwell, not hitting any of the stairs, landing at the bottom, O’Shei said.
Prosecutor Christopher Belling asked if O’Shei witnessed “Mr. Sager do anything menacing or threatening to Mr. Basil before he was launched off those stairs.”
O’Shei said he did not. “It was a full two handed extension,” O’Shei testified, describing the push down the stairs.
Basil’s attorney, Joel Daniels, said there is more to the story.
“This was a dispute in a tavern at 2:00 am. Both participants were intoxicated had some words and that’s how it ended,” Daniels said. News 4’s Ed Drantch asked if there was a verbal dispute before the fight. Daniels said, “we believe they did.”
Daniels believes that intoxication can be used a defense in this case. He says in order to prove someone is guilty of First Degree Assault, prosecutors will have to prove that there was a “prolonged course of conduct” that shows a “depraved indifference to human life” by the defendant. Daniels says what happened to Basil happened “in a flash.’
O’Shei told the court Sager had been aggressive for a brief second. O’Shei said he helped carry Sager outside and that Sager was bleeding from his nose. Sager was unresponsive.
Still, O’Shei said, Basil came outside screaming Sager tried to assault him and demanded Sager be arrested.
O’Shei testified it was Rob Eloff, another off-duty officer working security, who got a set of handcuffs from his car and cuffed Sager.
“Finally, when Mr. Eloff comes back, I said listen, take these cuffs off, he doesn’t need them on. He took them off shortly after, um, Buffalo Fire Department showed up, I stepped back and they started administering first aid,” O’Shei testified.
Jeff Basil stayed quiet — walking out of the courtroom — having just heard stunning witness testimony against him.
During the hearing, O’Shei admitted he was working security, inside the bar, which has always been against Buffalo Police policy. He said he was drinking, but insisted he was not drunk.
Rob Eloff was also called to testify about what happened inside Mollys Pub that morning. Eloff pleaded the fifth amendment to each question. He was quickly excused by the judge.
This case now goes before an Erie County grand jury.
The grand jury will either indict or dismiss the charges within 45 days.