Man charged in bat beating freed

July 25, 2008 2:50:57 PM PDT
A Cape Cod man accused of beating a man with a baseball bat because he thought he was a Yankees fan was released from jail Friday by a judge who said the media had made too much of the case.Barnstable Superior Court Judge Gary Nickerson granted Robert Correia's appeal of another judge's ruling that had kept the 20-year-old in custody without bail since July 9.

"Because the words Boston Red Sox and New York Yankees were interjected into this case, this thing spun out of control," Nickerson said.

Correia is accused of beating William Nestor, of Northport, N.Y., with an aluminum bat as Nestor and his family waited in traffic following a July 4 fireworks display in the Cape Cod town of Falmouth.

Nestor testified he was attacked after asking a group of men to stop taunting people with New York license plates in the heart of Red Sox country. Correia claims he tried to break up a fight and hit Nestor in self-defense.

Correia, of Falmouth, was released on personal recognizance under several conditions, including random alcohol testing.

Nickerson said that if Correia pleads guilty to assault and battery with a dangerous weapon he probably will receive two weeks in a jail and probation.