KALAMAZOO, Mich. (May 14, 2014)– The bar employee accused of shooting and killing Damian Tejada following an altercation at Wayside West on Stadium Drive in Kalamazoo will be heading for trial.
Orlando Mitchell appeared before a packed courtroom as witnesses testified to what they saw the night of April 16.
“I held him in my arms and I went over and I tried to stop his bleeding,” said John Bolenbaugh. “He had skin missing…..I never saw a gun shot before.”
Damian’s mother, Ymaleth Tejada, and family members broke into tears as well.
Witness John Bolenbaugh, who knew Damian from Wednesday night poker at the Wayside West, testified that he thought he might die that night as well.
“After those two shots, which was quick, I thought, ‘I wonder what it’s going to be like to get shot’, he said. “I realized I didn’t get shot and I watched Mitchell unload the gun while Damian was on the ground.”
Bolenbaugh also had some back and forth with the defense attorney who questioned how many drinks Damian had.
“It’s my understanding that Damian was not playing poker on this evening,” said the defense attorney.
Bolenbaugh said. “He said he was too drunk from Wayside. They gave him too much alcohol.”
“Based on your general observation, did he appear to be drunk?” she asked.
“You can’t really tell,” said Bolenbaugh. “That doesn’t change anything, he was still gunned down.”
This employee of Wayside West testified that she saw someone strike Orlando Mitchell, who worked as both a bar-back and a bouncer at the bar with what looked like a pint glass right before the shooting.
“The first thing I had seen was the glass being broken over his face,” said Autumm Papimeau.
She said she then saw Mitchell walking quickly after Damian with a gun.
“The first shot was fired right in front of me, then he kept shooting in the poker room,” she said.
The defense argued that the case shouldn’t be bound over because they said that Mitchell was clearly defending him self.
However, the judge disagreed.
Mitchell could be heard telling family members that he loved them following the hearing, breaking into tears as he was lead away.