A police officer stabbed while trying to break up a brawl outside a City of Newburgh nightclub has been released from the hospital, police said Monday, and his alleged attacker has been identified.
City of Newburgh patrol Officer Eric Henderson was released from Westchester Medical Center in Valhalla late Saturday night and is recuperating at home from a stab wound to the neck, police said. Henderson was spared a potentially life-threatening wound by his bulletproof vest.
The alleged attacker, Larry Gantt, 35, of Poughkeepsie, who also was stabbed in the melee at The Dry Dock nightclub at 90 Broadway early Saturday, is at Westchester Medical Center under police guard, Newburgh Police Chief Michael Ferrara said in a statement.
Gantt will be arraigned at the hospital on a charge of first-degree attempted murder in the attack on the officer and first-degree assault in the stabbing of another bar patron, police said, adding that more charges are expected. Gantt's condition was not disclosed, but he's expected to remain at the hospital "for a couple more days," said Newburgh police Lt. Dan Cameron.
The injured bar patron, Adrian Hargrove, 22, of the City of Newburgh, was taken to the emergency room at St. Luke's Cornwall Hospital in Newburgh and then was flown to Westchester Medical Center, where he remains in critical but stable condition, police said. He was fighting with Gantt when officers arrived at the scene, according to police.
Gantt has an extensive criminal history and is on parole, police said. Gantt spent 6 1/2 years in prison, from 2000 to 2006, after convictions for assault and drug possession, and served nearly three additional years on a drug possession conviction before being paroled in February, according to a state database.
Two Newburgh men who also were stabbed in the fight since have been released from hospitals: Justin Barnwell, 26, and Demetrius Ware, 28. Ware has been charged with disorderly conduct and third-degree weapons possession for allegedly using a bottle against another person involved in the brawl, police said. It's unclear who's responsible for stabbing Barnwell and Ware.
Like Gantt, Ware is on parole, police said. He was released from prison in July 2011 after serving 3 1/2 years on a conviction for first-degree assault, according to a state database.
The fight began a few minutes after 2:30 a.m. Saturday at an event honoring Newburgh homicide victim Justin Doctor, who was shot to death Oct. 14. Doctor was a student at Orange Community College and had a T-shirt business. Police are still searching for his killer.
When officers arrived at the event for Doctor, they found a large crowd -- estimated at 80-100 people -- outside the club, including several people involved in the fight.
City of Newburgh Mayor Judy Kennedy said the stabbing prompted a new discussion among the city's elected leaders aimed at finding a solution to late-night and early-morning violence, particularly violent incidents involving big crowds. Earlier in 2012 and during the summer months, police handled several large-scale violent incidents involving dozens or hundreds of people.
The investigation into Saturday's melee is ongoing, and police are asking anyone with information to contact detectives at 845-561-3131.