Bahe, Watson Enter Not Guilty Pleas To Aggravated Assault Charges
Two Arizona men in district court on Monday pleaded not guilty to charges related to a beating that resulted in the death of another man.
Dwayne Bahe, who was 36 when arrested, entered his plea to three counts of aggravated assault during his arraignment before Natrona County District Court Judge Daniel Forgey.
David Watson, who was 42 when arrested, also pleaded not guilty to three counts of aggravated assault plus one count of being an accessory after the fact.
Watson is Navajo and speaks little English. Forgey read him his rights and outlined other legal matters to him through an interpreter who is a prosecutor for the Navajo Nation.
Last month, the state changed the charges from second-degree murder to aggravated assault.
Casper Police say earlier in November, there was a fight at a hotel on the 900 block of West Yellowstone.
Gary Jefferson of New Mexico died of injuries sustained in the brawl, while Kameron Begay went to the hospital to be treated for his injuries.
Witnesses told police that all the men involved had been drinking earlier and someone had made disrespectful comments to another.
Both Bahe and Watson claim self-defense, and attempted to leave the state.
Before they crossed the state line, they were contacted by investigators and returned to Casper and to surrender to authorities.
Bahe and Watson each are free on $40,000 bond.
If convicted, they each face up to 10 years in prison for each aggravated assault charge.
If convicted of the accessory-after-the-fact charge, Watson faces up to another three years in prison.