Bar fight leaves two men jailed on assault, murder charge

Darryl Baptiste of Brooklyn, N.Y. (left) and Patrece Petersen of Vineyard Haven were booked on assault charges in the Dukes County Jail. — Photo courtesy of Dukes County Sheriff's Department

Oak Bluffs police arrested two men in connection with a bar fight early Sunday morning between two pairs of men in which one of the assailants pulled out a knife and the other man attempted to choke his victim.

Following a day-long search with the assistance of Edgartown officers, Oak Bluffs police arrested Patrece Petersen, 40, of Summer Street in Vineyard Haven and Darryl Baptiste, 34, of Lafayette Avenue, Brooklyn, N.Y.

Mr. Baptiste was arraigned in Edgartown District Court Monday on charges of assault and battery with a dangerous weapon, and assault and battery.

Mr. Petersen was arraigned on charges of assault to murder, assault and battery, and disorderly conduct.

According to the police report, Frank Cray, 38, of Edgartown was drinking in the Ritz Cafe Sunday evening with his brother, Jason Cray, 44, of Texas, when Mr. Baptiste, who had entered the bar with a group of friends, bumped into him from behind causing him to drop his drink. Mr. Cray, police said, turned around and told Mr. Baptiste he had caused him to drop his drink.

“Frank Cray then stated that Baptiste stated that he’s killed people in New York for less than that and an argument ensued,” Officer Dan Cassidy wrote in his report.

Mr. Baptiste and Mr. Petersen and their group left the bar but returned a short time later. Another patron asked the men not to enter. Mr. Baptiste brandished some type of razor knife, according to the report, and slashed the entire back of Frank Cray’s leather jacket.

A fight began and Mr. Cray wrestled Mr. Baptiste to the ground when Mr. Petersen “began choking him from behind with such force that he believed he was going to pass out. He (Mr. Cray) stated that he could hear Petersen screaming he was going to kill him.”

Mr. Cray was able to fight them off and go to the assistance of his brother who was being assaulted by several other men on Circuit Avenue. All of the men ran off when police arrived.

The brothers were treated for their injuries at the Martha’s Vineyard Hospital. Following a day-long search police arrested both Mr. Baptiste and Mr. Petersen.

Mr. Petersen paid $5,000 and was released from the Dukes County Jail late Sunday. Mr. Baptiste was released Monday on $1,000 bail.