May 28--HYANNIS -- A Cape Cod DJ claims he was attacked early Thursday at the Steak House Sports Bar by men attending the spring conference of the New England Narcotic Officers Association.
Duane Alves of Falmouth, better known as DJ Alvzie, also claims men he thinks were off-duty police officers blocked all the exits from the building, preventing him from leaving. When he did try to leave, he was attacked a second time, he said. The second attack resulted in serious injuries, including broken bones around his right eye and a damaged nasal cavity, said Alves' attorney, Robert Bianchi of Hyannis.
The Barnstable police confirmed Friday that two altercations took place that night at the bar, "the nature of which we're investigating," Lt. Sean Balcom said.
"I'm still in shock," Alves said Thursday at the Barnstable police station, where he gave a statement to investigating officers.
Alves said he was working as a DJ at the Steak House Sports Bar on Wednesday night. Just after midnight, he said, the bar was thick with off-duty police officers attending the annual conference that was held Wednesday, Thursday and Friday at the Resort and Conference Center in Hyannis.
Officers accused in attack
According to Alves, the attack began when he saw a man bothering a woman he knows. "I went up, pulled a chair away and stood between him and the woman, who had come to see me," Alves said.
"I kept my back to him, trying to give the woman some space and a chance to get away from the guy."
Alves said the other man dumped his drink over him then attacked.
Others joined in hitting and punching, Alves said. "There were a bunch more who formed this human wall preventing the bouncers or anyone else from getting to me," Alves said. "They all lined up to protect the guys who were beating me."
According to Alves, he was shoved to the floor, kicked and punched repeatedly. While down, he saw one of his attackers drop a cellphone.
"I grabbed it and hid it," he said.
Alves said eventually he managed to get to his feet and ran to a portion of the second floor that was not open to the public. Despite demands that he return the cellphone, Alves said he refused to do so, describing the device as "the only thing I had that could identify the man who attacked me." Alves said he was attacked a second time a short while later when he tried to leave the bar and encountered "a line of undercover officers surrounding the building."
The Barnstable police arrived a short time later, and he was taken to the hospital. "The only reason I got out of there was thanks to Barnstable police. They did the best they could. I handed the phone over to (Officer) Eugene Desrouisseaux because I trust him."
Barnstable Police Chief Paul MacDonald confirmed on Friday night that the cellphone is owned by someone who was attending the annual conference, which has been held for several years in Hyannis and draws narcotics officers from all over New England.
The police chief would not identify the owner of the cellphone or say whether the cellphone's owner was involved in the attack.
With a big melee going on, the importance of a dropped cellphone "may be a little overblown," Balcom said.
The police are taking the incident seriously and doing a thorough job investigating, Bianchi said.
No Barnstable police were involved in the barroom brawl, Balcom said.
Three Barnstable officers spent all day Friday interviewing witnesses, including bar patrons, employees and law enforcement officials, MacDonald said.
"(The investigation) is going to take the some time," Balcom said.
The police will be piecing together claims by Alves, who has posted photographs on his Facebook page showing his bruised, swollen face.
Alves was taken by ambulance to Cape Cod Hospital by Hyannis Fire and Rescue. The DJ said he was treated for broken orbital bones and a broken nasal cavity on the right side of his face and has been advised to see a specialist.
A spokeswoman from Cape Cod Hospital confirmed Alves was treated and released from the hospital.
An important consideration for the Barnstable police is whether the attackers were law enforcement officials.
Although Alves said that none of the attackers self-identified themselves as officers nor did he see any badges, others at the bar Wednesday night told him his assailants were participants at the narcotics investigators convention being held this week in Hyannis.
Alves also said anyone working in bars for years, as he has, is able to identify off-duty police officers.
"They are big, strong and fit, and they are in groups of four, six or eight," Alves said.
The New England Narcotic Officers Association is based in Framingham and comprises 1,200 active and retired local, state and federal law enforcement professionals from New England.
The president of the association, Westminster Police Chief Salvatore Albert, did not respond to an email sent by the Cape Cod Times seeking comment on the Hyannis incident. Ashland police Detective Matt Gutwill was identified by a woman answering the phone at the association's office as the association's media contact at the convention. Contacted by telephone, Gutwill said he knew nothing about an alleged violent incident involving association members.
Anthony Pettigrew, a spokesman from the U.S. Drug Enforcement Administration in Boston, said his office would look into the Hyannis incident, but he declined to make any further comment.
Speaking about his personal feelings, investigating other police officers is not enjoyable, Balcom said.
"But we have a job to do," Balcom said. "The bottom line is, you have someone with broken bones in his face."
Charges may go beyond simple assault and battery, Balcom said.
If Alves was kicked, charges would include assault and battery with a shod foot, MacDonald said.
If the DJ's injuries are considered significant, further charges may be brought against the perpetrators, the police chief said.
Times staff writer Doug Fraser contributed to this report.