Travis R. Myers was found not guilty on the charge of misdemeanor battery, during a bench trial Wednesday in Barton County District Court.
District Magistrate Judge Don Alvord heard the case and ruled the state had not proved that Myers battered his brother Nathan on Feb. 28, 2011 as charged.
On March 1 of last year, the Great Bend Tribune reported on the previous day’s police reports in On The Record:
"Police were dispatched to 1305 MacArthur Road at 4:03 a.m. Monday, when Nathan Myers reported three unknown males came into his residence and battered him. During the investigation Travis Myers, 25, admitted to battering Nathan and was arrested for battery domestic violence and booked into jail in lieu of $1,000 bond."
That was followed by a page 1 Crime Stoppers story in the March 11 Tribune. Although Police Chief Dean Akings said officers stood by their decision to arrest Travis Myers because he allegedly told them he’d shoved his brother, Crime Stoppers was seeking information about the crime reported to 911. Nathan Myers said three Hispanic men had entered the house around 3 a.m. and beaten him and a friend who was also in the house.
County Attorney Douglas Matthews said Thursday that Great Bend City Attorney Robert Suelter chose not to handle the arrest in municipal court because the men are the sons of Great Bend City Councilman Randy Myers. To avoid a conflict of interest, the case instead went to the county attorney’s office, and Matthews felt there was enough evidence to proceed by filing the battery charge, a Class B misdemeanor.
Although Nathan Myers told police he had been battered by three unknown Hispanic males, the details of the crime were never entirely clear, and police noted at the time that alcohol was involved.
In the 911 call, he cannot provide more of a description of the assailants or what they were wearing. He tells the dispatcher he’s injured but doesn’t need an ambulance.
Officers were suspicious of his story, Matthews said. They searched the neighborhoods but did not find three unknown Hispanic males, he added. They did talk to Travis Myers, who "told the officers they had been involved in a tussle." Officers observed the brothers had been drinking and concluded "they apparently duked it out," Matthews said.
Travis Myers maintained his innocence, and indicated the nature of the "tussle" was taken out of context. He denied battering his brother. Judge Alvord found him not guilty.