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Possible charges after fan falls at Bills game
By Jane Flasch
Buffalo, N.Y. - Authorities say charges are possible after an unruly fan fell from the third deck of Ralph Wilson Stadium and landed on another man during the Buffalo Bills' game against the New York Jets.
Video shows the fan sliding down a handrail in a seated position Sunday before flipping backward and falling about 30 feet into the stands below.
The man who has not been identified has been banned from attending future Bills games.
"All of a sudden the body came out of nowhere," said Keith Yohe of Henrietta. "It was like a 'Die Hard' movie. It just came out and landed on the gentleman in front of me."
Yohe said he had just finished speaking to the fan in the seat in front of him, engaging in "banter" when the falling fan landed partitally on top of that seat.
"I said are you okay and he didn't say a word," said Yohe.
He described the fan as shaking and in shock. A doctor from the crowd came held the man's head mobile waiting for the EMT's.
As for the man who fell: "I expected to see broken bones and a bunch of bad stuff and he was just laying there laughing," said Yohe.
Police say the man had been drinking and was attempting to slide down the metal bannister when he fell.
Erie County sheriff's spokeswoman Mary Murray says the incident is under investigation and charges may be filed. Investigators did not release the names of those involved or comment on the condition of either man on Monday.
Both men were taken to a hospital.
Bills President and CEO Russ Brandon issued a statement regarding the incident:
The irresponsible behavior that occurred at yesterdays game by the fan who fell from the upper deck is a violation of our Fan Code of Conduct and cannot, and will not, be tolerated. This individual will not be permitted back into Ralph Wilson Stadium. The vast majority of our fans who attend Bills home games at Ralph Wilson Stadium do so in a responsible manner and we continue to work diligently to eliminate those individuals who violate our Fan Code of Conduct from game days at our stadium. We are cooperating with the Erie County Sheriffs Office during their investigation of this incident and we want to extend our best wishes for a speedy recovery to the fan who was injured in the 200 level.
Keith Yohe and his friend left the game shortly after the fall.
"That should be his last game," he said of the fan who fell. "If he's going to put other people's lives in danger for a prank then he has no business being there."