One of nine people arrested in connection with the beating death of an American tourist in Greece talked to media on Friday after his release on bail.
Nenad Jovanovic, 22, said that he and another Serb (also released on bail) were not part of the fight that left Bakari Henderson, 22, dead on July 7.
“It was a total chaos,” he said.
That night, Henderson was with his friends in a bar in the Laganas party district on the island of Zakynthos. At some point, some say he put his glass on somebody else’s table, some say he tried to take a selfie with a waitress. In any case, it appears have sparked a conflict.
A 32-year-old bouncer at the bar walked up to Henderson and started to talk to him in an aggressive fashion, according to local media. Henderson hit him in the face and a brawl broke out between Henderson and his friends, the bouncer, a bartender, and other Serbians at the bar.
At some point Henderson ran out of the bar in an attempted escape. But the bouncer, the 34-year-old bartender, and others followed him out.
Security camera footage published by Greek media protothema.gr showed the end of the fight.
In the video footage, confirmed as genuine by Greek authorities, Henderson is seen running away from a group of men. As the men catch up to him, one throws Henderson against a parked car. The group then proceeds to kick and pummel him to the ground. Bystanders attempt to intervene, and as the crowd clears, someone is seen attempting CPR on Henderson.
Greek authorities said that Henderson was sent to the hospital, but was pronounced dead on arrival. His death was caused by severe head injuries.
A total of nine men—one Greek bar employee, the bar’s bouncer, who was a British citizen of Serb origin, and seven Serbian tourists—have been charged with intentional homicide, reported AP. If found guilty, the charges carry a maximum life sentence.
Serbian news reports said Serbian Ambassador Dusan Spasojevic and Serbian consuls visited the seven Serbians in jail on July 11.
A defense lawyer for one of the nine said that although his client caused some bodily harm, there was no intent to kill. The attorney is hopeful that the video footage will be useful as court evidence to prove that his client was not the one to lay the fatal blow to Henderson’s head, reported the ABC.
On Thursday, Jovanovic and another suspect were released on $5,700 bail and returned to southern Serbia, B92 television reported.
Jovanovic said he felt sorry for Henderson. “Nobody deserves that,” he said.