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Nov 9, 2009 1:50 PMPublication: The Southampton Press

Song offers timeline to fatal struggle

Nov 9, 2009 1:50 PM

The widow of a part-time bouncer killed in a Southampton bar last year wept and walked out of a Riverhead courtroom on Thursday afternoon as the song that had been playing in the bar when the fatal fight between her husband and a patron broke out played for the jury hearing the murder case against Anthony Oddone, the man accused of killing the bouncer.

The man who had been the DJ in the Southampton Publick House on the fateful August night in 2008 testified that he had put the song “Calabria” by the techno group Enur on the stereo and then stepped out from behind his corner booth and left the room just as one of the bouncers approached a table with a man and a woman dancing on it. Paul Fallo, the DJ, told the jury he saw the bouncer, Andrew Reister, motion to the people dancing on the table to get down just before he left the room to talk to the bar’s manager to find out how much longer he was to keep the music going. But as the six-minute 30-second song played, unbeknownst to Mr. Fallo, a struggle ensued inside the bar between Mr. Reister and Mr. Oddone, who had been dancing on the low cocktail tables in the bar’s lounge.

Minutes later, as Mr. Fallo was coming back into the barroom, a man rushed past him and out a side door.

“He was moving very quickly, running I would say,” Mr. Fallo, 32, told the jury. “I had seen him dancing on the table.”

As the thumping bass of the dance song played through a computer’s speakers in the courtroom, Assistant District Attorney Denise Merrifield asked Mr. Fallow to identify the points in the song when he left the room and when he returned—to find Mr. Reister unconscious on the floor, with another security man and several patrons huddled around him—giving the jury a timeline for how long Mr. Oddone had choked Mr. Reister before fleeing.

Mr. Fallo said that he left the bar just as the vocal portion of the song began, about one minute in. He said he commonly used the length of the song as an opportunity to escape the confines of the small DJ booth and stretch his legs and get a feel for how much longer the bar would be open. While speaking to the bar’s manager, he said, one of the bartenders came up to them and said a fight had broken out in the bar. Both men headed inside. When Mr. Fallo identified the part of the song that was playing when he re-entered the bar, a technician seated at the computer the music was playing over said the song had been on for four minutes and 18 seconds.

In her opening statements, Ms. Merrifield said that Mr. Oddone had choked Mr. Reister for nearly three minutes, possibly as long as two minutes after the bouncer had stopped resisting and fallen unconscious. The length of time, she said, indicated that Mr. Oddone had been intent on killing Mr. Reister with his chokehold.

Other witnesses in the now three-week-old trial have said that Mr. Oddone wrapped his arms around the bouncer’s neck and that Mr. Reister fell unconscious about 30 to 45 seconds into the struggle, while standing up, and then collapsed to the floor where Mr. Oddone continued to choke him despite attempts by other patrons and bar employees to pull him off. Mr. Oddone’s attorney, Sarita Kedia, has said the death was an accident and that her client was just defending himself.

Mr. Reister’s widow, Stacey, leaned forward in her seat and wept after Mr. Fallo identified the point in the song that he left the bar. She then got up and walked out of the courtroom, wiping away tears. Mr. Reister’s parents had left the courtroom just before the song started.

On cross examination, Ms. Kedia pointed out to Mr. Fallo that in a statement given to attorneys for the Publick House’s insurance company just days after the August 7, 2008 fight, he had said there were two guys and a girl dancing on the table that Mr. Reister approached. Mr. Fallo acknowledged the statement and said that he “misspoke” to the insurance company. Ms. Kedia asked if he had been shown pictures by the prosecution before the trial showing that there was, in fact, just one man and one woman on the table. Mr. Fallo said yes.

Mr. Fallo said that the bar staff typically allowed girls to dance on the cocktail tables but that any time a man got up on one of the tables they were immediately asked to get down.

On Thursday afternoon and Friday morning a young Brazilian man, Clayton Almeda, who had been sitting in a booth in the Publick House that evening testified that he saw Mr. Oddone get up on the table and start dancing next to a girl. He said the bouncer, Mr. Reister, came over to him almost immediately and motioned for him to get off the table.

Mr. Almeda’s recollection of how the fight developed, however, added to the blurriness of the story as seen through the many eyes of the witnesses who have testified thus far. Some have said Mr. Reister pushed Mr. Oddone off the table. Some have said he grabbed his shirt and tried to pull him off.

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determined to kill him........
By Sam (252), Westhampton Beach on Nov 6, 09 5:24 PM
Death penalty for Odone.
By local (106), north sea on Nov 6, 09 5:32 PM
3 members liked this comment
Just wondering if the girl on the other table was his girlfriend?
By wondering (63), Southampton on Nov 6, 09 6:24 PM
and golf members offered bail to this cold blooded murderer.What's this world coming to.
By nurse (53), sag harbor on Nov 6, 09 6:42 PM
This is one of the stupidest comments yet! Do you even understand what "cold blooded" means?
By Frank Wheeler (1826), Northampton on Nov 6, 09 8:22 PM
dictionary result for cold blooded; without emotion or feeling;dispassionate;cruel
By nurse (53), sag harbor on Nov 7, 09 3:17 AM
1 member liked this comment
This case is sounding more like a bad episode of law & order by the minute...
By slamminsammy (104), East Moriches on Nov 6, 09 9:27 PM
1 member liked this comment
i hope he recieves a fair trial and may god be with both anthony oddone as well as the entire riester family
By friend of tony (9), ronkonkoma on Nov 6, 09 11:27 PM
1 member liked this comment
He IS getting a fair trial- it's just not going the way "friends of Tony" were hoping it would. I am sorry, I am sure you want to believe he was truly defending himself. If he he truly was...I am wondering why he didn't run before he decided to jump Andrew from behind?
By wondering (63), Southampton on Nov 7, 09 5:46 AM
Just wondering what you are hoping a "fair trial" is? Would you like him to walk? Because you keep saying that and Im not sure what you mean. To Nurse: thank you for advising of the definition.
By Sam (252), Westhampton Beach on Nov 7, 09 7:38 AM
1 member liked this comment
How do I become a friend of Tony? Ignore all his actions portray him as scrawny and act like he isn't getting a fair trial. Nah, I'll just remember the Tony I know that is arrogant, in excellent athletic shape, and choked a man for over 2 minutes.

Please friend just stay up the island and don't come back here.
By HB 4 Life (72), Hampton Bays on Nov 7, 09 7:54 AM
dont come back where? you ppl are yelling at me as if i have done something wrong. I will be there for my friend tony no matter what and if you know the type of person he is you would as well. Please dont get mad at me for being there for a friend. i promise you he never meant to kill mr reister
By friend of tony (9), ronkonkoma on Nov 7, 09 9:43 PM
You say he never meant to kill Mr. Reister, well what may I ask did he mean to do??? He held him in a neck lock til the bones in his neck broke, that certainly sounds vicious to me.
By AnonymousSgh (183), Sag Harbor on Nov 9, 09 11:41 PM
How can you promise that his intention was not to kill Andrew? Face it Friend, your Tony made a very bad judgement call, nice or not he has to face the consequences and soon.....How do you explain this nice guy's other violent behaviors in the past..
By wondering (63), Southampton on Nov 8, 09 12:26 AM
1 member liked this comment
As Mr. Oddone has a prior conviction for for an alcohol related incident, I think the "instant ---------, just add alcohol" line could be used here.

MY prayers go out to Stacy Reister, her children, Andy's Parents & brother Jim. The Reisters are stand up members of our community. Can Mr. Oddone say that?
By Draggerman (955), Southampton on Nov 8, 09 7:02 AM
Also..to Andrew's other brother, John...
By AnonymousSgh (183), Sag Harbor on Nov 8, 09 9:00 PM
Friend of Tony is right- we shouldn't be picking on him. He has no control over what his friend does or did. And I suppose Mr. Oddone could have a "nice" side of his personality. And he probably didnt go out that night with intention to kill anybody, or even get into a fight. (who knows really.) But if friendoftony is asking for Mr. Oddone to WALK (if thats what he means by "getting fair trial") then the friend maybe has the same type of temper or loss of self-control and/or drinking behavior as ...more
By Sam (252), Westhampton Beach on Nov 8, 09 8:47 AM
I can see the point Funbeer is making. But Oddone will be going to jail for a long time nonetheless. Because there was a point when Reister was no longer a threat, and Oddone wasnt listening to reason by the bystanders.
By Sam (252), Westhampton Beach on Nov 9, 09 8:14 AM
You have a point funbeer, but after all is said and done, Oddone did not let go, when people were hitting him, pulling him, yelling at him, he did not let go, even when Andy was down, he did not let go. Drunken rage? Fear for his life? Andy had his back to him, and he jumped on Andy...why not just leave if he was afraid? I wonder if he will take the stand in his own defense.
By pstevens (406), Wilmington on Nov 9, 09 10:00 AM
Roid Rage?
By wondering (63), Southampton on Nov 9, 09 3:47 PM
This comment has been removed because it is a duplicate, off-topic or contains inappropriate content.
By ET66 (12), SOUTHAMPTON on Nov 10, 09 4:41 PM