One man from Clearwater is dead and another from St. Petersburg is facing a manslaughter charge as the result of a fight that erupted just before midnight on Sunday, April 9 in The Stinger Bar, 2222 49th Street S., near the city limits of Gulfport.
According to police reports, Vincent Hollingsworth, 62, was playing pool with a man when an argument began. Hollingsworth “struck the man multiple times in the face with a cue ball.”
At this point, police records say, two bar bouncers broke up the fight and separated the two men.
That’s when Mario Renard Stephens, 32, a different man, came up behind Hollingsworth and struck him over the head with a glass beer bottle “without intent to murder,” police records show. Hollingsworth stumbled backward. The bouncers attempted to restrain Stephens but he was able to free himself, at which point he struck Hollingsworth several more times with the beer bottle and his fist. Hollingsworth fell to the ground and struck his head on the pool table.
Paramedics were called and took Hollingsworth to Bayfront Health St. Petersburg Hospital where he was pronounced dead at 12:33 a.m. on Monday, April 10.
After the fight, Stephens left the bar in a vehicle, but was later seen in the area and was arrested by St. Petersburg police early Monday.
The bar fight was captured on video surveillance and an independent witness positively identified Stephens during a photo lineup, court records show. While under arrest, Stephens admitted he was at the bar but denied he was involved.
On Tuesday, April 11, Stephens posted a bond of $50,000 and was released from the county jail.
The manslaughter second-degree felony charges are pending.
This is the third homicide incident at The Stinger Bar in less than three years. In April 2015, Juan Javier Oquendo, 26, was arrested for shooting death of James Cason, 33, early Sunday morning, April 12, after a “verbal dispute,” according to St. Petersburg Police. Another shooting occurred in November 2014 in The Stinger Bar’s parking lot, claiming the life of Gulfport resident James Brown, 63.