Paul Elrod, who was convicted Wednesday, faces up to 10 years in prison on a count of assault with intent to do great bodily harm less than murder. His sentencing was set for December 2.
According to trial testimony, Elrod, 39, of Milan, arrived late at a March 20 screening of the French-language cartoon "The Triplets of Belleville." He told his wife shortly after the movie started that he had had trouble finding a parking space at the Ann Arbor theater.
Jamin Eisenbach turned around and said, "Sshh," putting a finger to his mouth. Eisenbach testified that he felt the back of his seat being kicked off and on during the movie and also heard coughing behind him and blowing into his hair.
The men confronted each other after the movie. Eisenbach testified that Elrod kicked him in the chest, causing him to fall backward down some steps and to the landing where he hit a banister railing, breaking his ribs and puncturing his lung.
In other words, the guy was kicked and fell down the steps. Let's see...who would have thought that by getting into a fight on an upstairs floor, that you might get kicked down the steps?
Mutual combat cases trouble me. When two people get into a fight, we usually send the winner to prison. Does that make sense?
If I walk over over an area marked "Wet Floor," should you punish the store owner when I fall? If two people get into a fight, shoud be punish the person who wins? What, after all, do you expect to happen when you exchange blows?