Former Saved By The Bell star Dustin Diamond, best known for his awkwardly hilarious character Samuel “Screech” Powers on the timeless popular hit teen television series Saved By The Bell, has been charged with second-degree murder after a man he stabbed during a barroom brawl has died at a Wisconsin hospital.
Diamond, 37, initially told police that he accidentally stabbed the man with what he said was a ‘pen’, although he later referred to the weapon, which was never found, as a knife. According to Diamond, while trying to defend his fiance, 27-year-old Amanda Schutz, at the Grand Avenue Saloon in Port Washington, where Diamond is a resident, he was forced to brandish the weapon.
Diamond was initially charged with second-degree recklessly endangering safety, disorderly conduct, and carrying a concealed weapon and was released on $10,000 bail before the man, only being referred to by the name of ‘Casey’ per request of family, passed away. Originally reported that Casey was completely fine and his wounds mostly superficial, reports say he took a turn for the worse after a wound from the fight became infected. He died on the operating room table.
Port Washington Police Department spokesperson Marvin Maxwell made the public announcement this morning that Diamond is now being sought for charges of second-degree murder.
“As requested by the family, the last name of the deceased is not to be released at this time and will only be referred to as ‘Casey,'” Maxwell said in the statement. “The case is thoroughly being investigated by the best detectives in Port Washington. Due to the fact that Mr. Diamond used a concealed weapon during the altercation, the police department had no choice but to charge him with second-degree homicide. Please keep in mind that Mr. Diamond is innocent until proven guilty by the court of law,” Maxwell added.
Those who witnessed the altercation seemed to have mixed opinions on what happened during the Christmas night brawl. Some say Diamond was behaving negatively and arrogantly and after refusing to shake the hand of a woman, the fight began. Others say two men had Diamonds girlfriend by the hair and had punched her in the face several times before Diamond got involved. One witness, Carl Peters, told police that the stabbing victim had verbally provoked Diamond.
“He told Screech he wanted to give him a wedgie and stuff him in a locker. Screech didn’t like that very much, and that’s when the tussle began” Peters said. “It was just like that episode where Screech got mad at Zack for stealing Lisa away from him, only this time, Screech stabbed the guy. It was awesome. I was half expecting Mr. Belding to come rushing out to break it up and yell ‘hey, hey, hey! What is going on here?!'”
Diamond has been re-arrested following the official announcement of the murder charge. No further court dates have been announced at this time.