Man sentenced to 7 years for deadly bar fight

EVERETT — A few seconds of violence outside a bar cost a Mountlake Terrace man seven years of freedom Thursday and the family of his victim a lifetime of memories.

Bryan James Scott, 22, apologized for kicking and stomping on Christopher Patterson’s head during a 2012 fight outside O’Houlie’s Pub in Mountlake Terrace.

Patterson, 32, was beaten into a coma. He died about seven months later, the result of head injuries, brain trauma and pneumonia.

Scott in January pleaded guilty to first-degree manslaughter. On Thursday, the Snohomish County Superior Court sentencing hearing was packed with supporters of both men.

Scott is a loyal friend, a good worker and the life of the party, Judge George Bowden was told.

Patterson, meanwhile, was remembered with equal fondness. He left behind a 14-year-old daughter who won’t have him there to watch her graduate from high school, or to walk her down the aisle at her wedding, or to be there when she has children of her own, the judge was told.

Key evidence in the case was surveillance video that documented what happened outside the pub on Oct. 4, 2012.

Deputy prosecutor Chris Dickinson asked that the video be played prior to Bowden deciding on Scott’s sentence.

The video documented a barroom beef between two men escalating into blows, then knives being pulled, then reinforcements being summoned. During the melee, which appeared to involve about a half-dozen participants, Patterson dropped to the ground, apparently knocked senseless. That’s when Scott began repeatedly kicking and stomping on the unconscious man.

As the images unfolded on the screen Thursday the courtroom filled with sounds of weeping.

Prosecutors had initially charged Scott with assault. That was amended to second-degree murder after Patterson died. The murder charge could have brought a prison sentence of more than 18 years. The plea eliminated the need for a trial.

Dickinson said the video showed the viciousness of the attack. He urged Bowden to sentence Scott to 8.5 years in prison, the top punishment for manslaughter under sentencing guidelines.

Defense attorney Mark Mestel of Everett countered that the video didn’t tell the whole the story. His client was stabbed in the chest and pepper sprayed in the face before he began kicking and stomping on Patterson, he said.

The combat lasted more than a minute; the stomping about eight seconds, Mestel said. Up to that point, his client had been acting in defense of himself and others, he said.

Bowden said he repeatedly viewed surveillance video prior to Thursday’s hearing.

“I frankly think the video speaks for itself,” the judge said.

Even giving Scott the benefit of a doubt for his reasons in joining the fight, there was no justification for the blows rained down on the unconscious Patterson, Bowden said.

He also said others involved in the events that night bear responsibility.

It was “yet another senseless tragedy involving young people,” Bowden said.

Scott North: 425-339-3431, north@heraldnet.com

More in Local News

A Democrat and ex-Republican team up to end two-party politics

Brian Baird and Chris Vance unveil a new organization called Washington Independents.

The beavers weren’t happy, either, about Mill Creek flooding

A tree fell on their dam, sending a rush of water into a neighborhood near Jackson High School.

Stranger offered candy to student walking home from school

The Granite Falls School District is warning families about… Continue reading

Man arrested after stolen car crashes in Everett

The accident occurred in the 100 block of SE Everett Mall Way.

5-vehicle crash in Arlington kills 62-year-old woman

Medics had transported her to the hospital, where she later died.

2 men hospitalized after rollover collision on U.S. 2

Two men were taken to the hospital with minor injuries… Continue reading

Marysville police serve a warrant — across the street from HQ

A man who fled was taken into custody. Police were serving a warrant for alleged drug-related crimes.

If vehicles crash and tumble, rescuers want to be ready

The Puyallup Extrication Team practiced with other fire departments on cars, SUVs and even buses.

Marysville man charged with stabbing wife who sought divorce

Nathan Bradford, 45, found divorce papers while going through the woman’s car.

Most Read