2nd Man Charged In Wedding Brawl At Philadelphia Hotel
By Steve Beck
PHILADELPHIA (CBS) – A New Jersey man was re-arrested for his alleged role in a wedding brawl at Philadelphia hotel earlier this month.
Investigators say 29-year-old Brian Lanza, of Westfield, New Jersey, assaulted a police officer during the melee. Lanza was originally charged with disorderly conduct and released for his alleged actions that occurred in the early morning hours of October 8th at the Sheraton in the Society Hill section.
Lanza turned himself in to police on Monday and is facing charges of Criminal Conspiracy, Aggravated Assault, Simple Assault, Resisting Arrest and related offenses. The Disorderly Conduct will be withdrawn by the District Attorney’s Office.
In addition to Lanza, 26-year-old Matthew Sofka, of Westfield, New Jersey, was charged with Aggravated Assault, Simple Assault, Recklessly Endangering Another Person and Riot for his alleged role in the brawl. Sources say he’s the brother of one of the groom.
Police said at least two separate wedding parties got into a fight that began inside the Sheraton.
One group of guests fought with another group, who had just returned to the hotel after an off-site reception. It spilled out into the street and police were called in around 1:30 a.m.
Eyewitnesses say the fight began in the lobby. It then escalated to the point where the cops requested what’s called a 3rd assist, which is an all-hands-on-deck call. The melee was caught on tape and posted to YouTube.
In the video, Philadelphia police used tasers and batons to get the crowd of about 75 people under control.
It is unclear what prompted the initial fight.