Witness Recalls Seeing Fall At the B.O.B.

Posted at 10:39 PM, Jan 16, 2014
and last updated 2014-01-16 22:39:33-05

GRAND RAPIDS, Mich. — Testimony began in a case involving the B.O.B. and the most recent deadly fall.  The establishment faces three charges issued by the state liquor control commission.

The charges include serving alcohol to an intoxicated person, over-serving alcohol and allowing that person to loiter. The B.O.B. could be fined or have its liquor license revoked or suspended.

One of the witnesses, who police requested we not identify, says he saw Kevin O’Brien fall down a stairwell to his death.

“I reached in to try to grab his legs, but he was too far gone,” the man said.

He added, “As he was falling down, he hit the rails going down too… before he hit the floor.”

O’Brien’s fall took place May 13, 2013. O’Brien reportedly tried to slide down the fourth floor rail and lost his grip.

“To my knowledge, what I saw as we opened the door to go down, he wasn’t stumbling or tipsy or… in any way or shape,” the witness said.

A forensic pathologist, a detective and an old acquaintance of O’Brien also gave statements. The pathologist spoke of a toxicology report that revealed trace elements of cocaine in O’Brien’s system. The drug was not considered a contributing factor to the fall.

However, the toxicology report also revealed O’Brien’s blood alcohol level was .25. That’s more than three times the legal driving limit. The detective in charge of looking into liquor violations at Grand Rapids’ bars read statements from people that had been interviewed.

“[A friend of O’Brien] and O’Brien had been out drinking all evening. They had been to Mojo’s, The Woods and to the B.O.B. He said that they had spent most of the evening at the B.O.B.”

The question in this case is, “Did staff at the B.O.B. over-serve alcohol to O’Brien?”

That’s the offense the bar is charged with by the state liquor control commission.

B.O.B. owner Greg Gilmore sat quietly as his defense attorney questioned how many drinking establishments O’Brien visited prior to his fatal fall.

Gilmore’s attorney also questioned if the numerous purchases at the B.O.B. on O’Brien’s credit card could have actually been for other members of his group.

More witnesses are expected to testify. The next hearing date still needs to be scheduled. Commissioner Ed Clemente will deliver his decision about 45 days after the final hearing.