DEDHAM, MASS. (WHDH) – Two sons of a former Quincy police detective faced a judge Wednesday for the first time since being arrested in connection with a fight outside the Robert I. Nickerson American Legion Post that led to the death of a 44-year-old father of three earlier this year.
Matthew and Steven Potter pleaded not guilty in connection with the death of Chris McCallum, of Bridgewater, during arraignments in Norfolk Superior Court in Dedham.
They were both released on bail.
Matthew Potter is charged with manslaughter and assault in connection with the January fight that left McCallum unconscious and bleeding on the ground outside the bar on Moon Island Road.
Steven Potter, who has been employed as an EMT with Boston EMS for more than two years, is facing assault charges related to two other people who were involved in the fight but not to McCallum, officials said.
In a statement, Boston EMS said, “Boston’s emergency medical professionals are committed to helping those in need, often through life-saving measures, and we have no tolerance for behavior that goes against this mission. As a result of today’s arraignment, Boston EMS has placed EMT Steven Potter on administrative leave. Our thoughts and prayers are with the McCallum family and everyone impacted by this horrible tragedy.”
The Potters were argumentative and acting aggressively before starting the fight with a member of the American Legion Post, court documents indicate.
When they were eventually thrown out of the facility, a scuffle is said to have broken out outside, involving the Potters, McCallum, and several others.
At one point during the fight, police say McCallum was punched, causing him to fall over and slam his head on the ground. He died two days later.
The state medical examiner’s office filed a death certificate in August, which indicated McCallum died from blunt force trauma and that his manner of death was a homicide.
McCallum was married with three sons. Dozens of his family members and friends packed the courtroom for the hearing, including McCallum’s wife, Kathy.
“My family will never be the same without such a wonderful husband. My sons will live forever without their loving father because of Matthew and Steven Potter and their reckless behavior and senseless act of violence,” Kathy McCallum told reporters.
Kathy McCallum claims her husband was sucker-punched in an attempt to break up the brawl.
Matthew and Steven Potter’s attorney said no one could see anything during the “general melee” in the dark parking lot. He also stated that he believes his clients are not guilty.
The Potter brothers are due back in court at a later date.
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