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January 1, 2010

 

Findlay man dies of injuries from Toledo bar fight

Toledo--A gay Findlay man has died, six days after suffering severe head injuries when he tried to protect a friend in a fight outside a bar.

Marland Woods’ December 19 death was ruled a homicide by Dr. Maneesha Pandey, deputy coroner for Lucas County.

A large group of people who got into an early Sunday morning altercation in Caesar’s Showbar were ejected from the gay club.

The fight allegedly started after someone bumped into another person on the dance floor. Bar staff cleared the floor.

Outside, fighting started again, and Woods was protecting a female friend with whom he had gone to the club when he was knocked down and his head was stomped on, according to the Toledo Blade.

His alleged assailant, Norman Corggens, was arrested shortly afterward and charged with felonious assault. There is no word yet on whether the charges will be increased following Woods’ death.

Police do not believe the attack was a hate crime.

Woods lived in Findlay with his partner of ten years, Brian Hunker. The couple bought their house together in 2005 and celebrated a commitment ceremony in September.

Woods seldom went out to the bars because he worked long hours. The trip to Caesar’s was only his second time out to the clubs in 2009.

“He was such a homebody,” his sister, Shonda Floyd, told the Findlay Courier. “This was only the second time this year he went to a bar and this happened to him.”

“He never started any trouble,” she continued. “He died trying to keep someone else from being hurt.”

A candlelight vigil was held December 22 at the Greyhound bus station across the street from the bar, where Woods was attacked.

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