Prosecutors last week dropped attempted homicide and related charges against a York City man who had been accused of firing a gun during a large fight outside Five Guys Burgers and Fries that ended with two people being shot.
But Tyree Lamar Eatmon is facing trial on a second case from the same fracas, for allegedly participating in a group assault on two men.
Eatmon, 24, of West Poplar Street, appeared before District Justice Richard Martin II on Thursday for his preliminary hearing on both sets of charges.
That's when prosecutors told the judge they would be withdrawing the charges against Eatmon in the Sept. 2 shooting case.
"They explained to Judge Martin that they're looking for other potential shooters in the case, due to the (security) videos they have from Rutter's and Five Guys and the one cellphone video they got from us," said George Marros, Eatmon's defense attorney.
Eatmon remains free on bail.
"He was very, very pleased because the whole time we've alleged he never possessed a firearm and never shot at anybody," Marros said. "He's always maintained his innocence."
Probe ongoing: But York City Police Chief Wes Kahley said detectives haven't ruled out recharging Eatmon.
"As the investigation unfolds further, we might charge him later on. Or we might not," Kahley said. "And whether this individual fired a gun or not, we still have
It's a legal principle that means if you participate in a crime with someone else, and that person injures or kills someone, you're equally responsible under state law.
Kahley said detectives are still investigating. He urged anyone with information to come forward.
Witnesses sought: "There were well over 200 people present that evening and I know we haven't spoken to 200 people," he said. "Until that occurs, we still need to speak with more people."
Shot during the fight were Glenniece Banks, 31, and Hakeem Kosh Sr., 22, both of York City. He was shot in the leg.
Banks was shot in the head and critically wounded during the 2:45 a.m. fight in the Five Guys parking lot along Route 30, police have said. She was not involved in the fight.
Banks has been transferred from York Hospital to a rehabilitation facility, according to York City Police Lt. Tim Utley.
Her condition is improving and her prognosis is good, he said.
Second case: Eatmon remains charged with aggravated assault, simple assault and related offenses for participating in the Five Guys beating of Niam Jamison and Donald Layton Jr., both 18, who were repeatedly punched, kicked and boot-stomped by members of the city's south-side crew, police said.
Jamison and Layton are affiliated with the city's Parkway crew, according to detectives. "Crews" are loosely organized neighborhood gangs.
Marros said two cellphone videos taken by eyewitnesses to the fight show the group kicking and stomping Jamison and Layton -- but according to Marros, the videos show Eatmon didn't kick either of the men.
"My legal opinion is that I don't believe it's aggravated assault," Marros said. "(The video shows) Tyree punches Niam Jamison one time and strikes Donald Layton a total of four times -- and he only uses his fists. The other defendants are seen in the video stomping and kicking the victims."
Plea possible: Marros said Eatmon would be willing to plead guilty to lesser charges, perhaps simple assault.
But Lt. Utley said detectives dispute Marros' assertion that Eatmon didn't kick or stomp Jamison and Layton.
Also on Thursday, the cases against Eatmon's four co-defendants were forwarded to York County Court for trial. All are charged with aggravated assault for the attacks on Jamison and Layton.
They are LaQinn Harris, 22; Xavier Maddox, 24; Qui Swan, 25; and Maurice Atkinson, 29. All are from York City except Maddox, who lives in Dover Township.
-- Staff writer Liz Evans Scolforo can also be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org.