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Attorney says Chad Kelly was grabbed around neck during altercation

The attorney representing former local football star Chad Kelly said Monday a video posted on Deadspin shows someone grabbing Kelly’s neck outside Encore bar and restaurant on Pearl Street.

“The video clearly shows someone grabbing Chad first,” attorney Thomas J. Eoannou said.

But that person’s face cannot be readily identified in the video, which was apparently recorded by someone with a cellphone, the attorney said.

“We do not know who it is,” he said, referring to the person who grabbed Kelly.

He added that he is not sure exactly when the neck grabbing occurred.

Kelly, 20, of Niagara Falls, the nephew of Buffalo Bills great Jim Kelly, last week accepted a full scholarship to play at the University of Mississippi in the fall.

“We are gathering facts on the matter,” Ole Miss coach Hugh Freeze said in a statement released by the university in Oxford, Miss.

Buffalo police said about 3:15 a.m. Sunday, Kelly refused to leave Encore at 492 Pearl St. and punched a bouncer in the face.

Eoannou on Monday elaborated on an earlier comment he made to The Buffalo News shortly after Kelly was arrested early Sunday.

“It remains to be seen who was the aggressor, and thankfully it was a scuffle where no one was hurt,” he had told The News.

Kelly was arraigned later Sunday in Buffalo City Court and was released without bail.

He is scheduled for return to City Court for a pretrial conference at 2 p.m. Jan. 5 before Judge Susan M. Eagan “to see if there is a way to dispose of the case short of trial,” Eoannou said.

Kelly’s companion, Brandon Hickey, 21, of Clarence, had been thrown out of the bar earlier and tried to re-enter, police said.

Kelly continued to fight with two bouncers and stated, “I’m going to go to my car and get my AK-47 and spray this place,” according to a report.

Buffalo police officers responding to that alleged threat stopped a 2005 Ford F-150 pickup truck in which Kelly was a passenger at 458 Pearl.

Kelly was forcibly removed from the vehicle, officers said.

Police said Kelly kicked and tried to swing at officers as they removed him from the vehicle. They said he resisted getting into a patrol vehicle and struggled with staff at central booking.

The bar’s security staff, Scott May and Clay Hubert, suffered minor injuries in the melee, including pain and swelling, according to the report.

Kelly faces multiple charges including third-degree assault, second-degree harassment, second-degree menacing, resisting arrest, fourth-degree criminal mischief and second-degree obstructing governmental administration.

Kelly and Hickey also were both charged with third-degree criminal trespass. All charges are misdemeanors or violations.

News Sports Reporter Mark Gaughan contributed to this report.

email: jstaas@buffnews.com