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Bartender says Basil tried to 'justify' Sager shove

Chris Caya/WBFO News

Adam O'Shei, an off-duty Buffalo police officer working security at Molly's Pub last spring, wrapped up his testimony in Jeffrey Basil's murder trial in State Supreme Court Tuesday.Under cross-examination by defense attorney Joel Daniels, O'Shei said his main concern was taking care of William Sager Jr. after Basil shoved him down the stairs inside the bar in May. O'Shei says he moved Sager outside without checking the extent of his injuries to protect him from Basil, the bar manager, and any potential stampede of patrons exiting the bar down the staircase.

The jury also heard from UB Physics Professor William Kinney who said Sager was pushed with "a considerable amount of force" and hit the bottom of the stairs at nearly 14 miles an hour.

The morning session concluded with Molly's bartender Jackson Zimmerman, a friend of Sager's from the National Guard. Zimmerman said Sager was drunk, but was not aggressive that night. Zimmerman said aggression would have been out of character for Sager.

The bartender said after the incident, Basil came back to the bar and tried to "justify everything that happened" to Sager.  On Monday, another Molly's Pub bartender testified Basil told her, "I just [expletive] killed a kid" following the incident.

Basil, 36, faces first-degree manslaughter, second-degree murder and tampering with evidence charges relating to the death of Sager on May 11, 2014. Sager, 28, suffered a severe brain injury after prosecutors say he was pushed down a flight of stairs. He died more than two months later.

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