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Head-stomper captured by bystander's video outside Oak Harbor bar

An Oak Harbor man who took part in a brutal assault that was caught on video outside a downtown bar three months ago was finally arrested following a brief standoff with police last month, court documents indicate.

Prosecutors charged 24-year-old Ronald Cabell, Jr., in Island County Superior Court June 28 with first-degree assault. If convicted, he could face up to 10 years and three months in prison under the standard sentencing range.

Oak Harbor police responded to a 911 report of a fight in front of the Lava Lounge on SE Pioneer Way at 1:40 a.m. March 27. They found a badly injured, 21-year-old man who had been beaten up by a group of five or so men. Witnesses said the assailants left the scene in an SUV, but a bar employee identified one of the suspects as Cabell, according to the report by Detective Tony Slowik.

One of the witnesses had videotaped the assault with a digital camera. Slowik wrote that the video shows several men, including Cabell, assaulting the victim as he was lying on the road. Cabell stomped on the victim’s head twice and then delivered “a soccer style kick” to the man’s head, according to the detective’s account of the video.

The video, Slowik wrote, shows that a couple of different bystanders tried to stop Cabell during the assault, but that he pushed them away. At least two other unidentified men also kicked the victim. The assault ended after a man pulled Cabell away.

The victim, who’s a member of the Navy, was knocked unconscious during the assault and suffered a broken leg, a fractured nasal cavity and multiple contusions across his body, the report states.

Slowik called Cabell on the phone a few days later. Cabell told the detective that a melee had occurred, but that everyone had been drinking and he didn’t remember much, the report shows. Cabell said he was leaving the state. The detective asked him to come to the police department first, but he never showed.

Then on June 23, Slowik and a fellow detective discovered that Cabell was at an apartment on NE Barron Drive. Cabell refused to leave the residence and told the detectives that they would have to get a warrant, which they did.

After receiving a telephonic arrest warrant, Slowik ordered Cabell to exit the apartment. Cabell refused, so the department’s High Risk Entry Team, Oak Harbor’s version of a SWAT team, responded to the site.

The department’s hostage negotiator and a detective talked with Cabell for about 15 minutes before he agreed to leave the apartment. He was arrested and booked into the Oak Harbor jail.

Island County Superior Court Judge Vickie Churchill set Cabell’s bail at $100,000 at a June 24 hearing.

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