Man in Bar Brawl With Barkley may Face Charge
Jorge Lugo may Have to Appear in Court After Five Witnesses Claimed they Saw him Hit a Woman in The Face With a Glass

By Pedro Ruz Gutierrez | Sentinel Staff Writer
Posted Nov 15, 1997

Orlando police are recommending that a battery charge be filed against a man involved in a bar brawl with NBA All-Star Charles Barkley last month.

Evidence against Jorge Lugo, 20, has been forwarded to the State Attorney's Office for review.

Barkley, a forward for the Houston Rockets, was arrested Oct. 27 after hurling Lugo through a plate-glass window of Phineas Phogg's on Church Street downtown. Barkley claimed he had been provoked.

Sgt. Bill Mulloy, an OPD spokesman, said five people, including a bar employee, said they saw Lugo throw a glass at Barkley before the altercation, hitting a woman at his table in the face.

If prosecutors decide to file, Lugo will not be arrested but will be served with a notice to appear in court. Battery is a first-degree misdemeanor that carries a maximum one-year term in jail.

Lugo's attorney, Mark NeJame, did not return calls for comment Friday. He previously said his client, who is 5 feet 2 and 110 pounds, did not throw ice or glass at Barkley's table.

Lugo, a construction worker from Orlando, incurred minor cuts to his upper right arm after the fight at around 2 a.m.

Police said Barkley, 6-6 and 252 pounds, chased Lugo out of the bar after his friend, Karen Carrington, was struck by a glass thrown at Barkley's table.

Carrington, of Deltona, said her face was bruised and that she had to wear a neck brace for an injured jaw.

Barkley, 34, is charged with aggravated battery and a misdemeanor charge of resisting arrest without violence. He is scheduled for another court appearance in Orlando on Dec. 2.

Source: Orlando Sentinel