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Condition of Hagerstown man injured at Camden Yards upgraded to serious

June 14, 2013

BALTIMORE — The condition of a Hagerstown man who was punched in the head and fell onto a concrete walkway last month while attending a Baltimore Orioles game at Camden Yards has been upgraded, according to hospital officials.

Matthew Fortese, 25, of 120 Chantilly Court, was listed in serious condition at the R Adams Cowley Shock Trauma Center in Baltimore, a hospital spokeswoman said Friday.

Fortese had been listed in critical condition earlier this week.

Baltimore police said the incident occurred shortly after 9 p.m. on May 29, when a man in the stands threw beer on Fortese and his date.

Fortese got up and confronted Michael Bell, the 21-year-old Annapolis man whom police allege was throwing the beer. Officers said as the two talked, Bell’s friend, Gregory Fleischman, 22, of Jarrettsville, Md., punched Fortese in the head.

The punch caused Fortese to fall about 5 feet onto a concrete walkway below, police said.

An officer who was on duty at Camden Yards said in the police report that he heard a “loud thump,” then saw Fortese lying unconscious on the walkway with blood coming from the back of his head.

Fleischman was charged with one count each of first-degree assault, second-degree assault and disorderly conduct, according to online court records.

Bell was charged with one count each of second-degree assault and disorderly conduct, court records show.

Fortese was wearing a New York Yankees baseball cap.

The Orioles and Yankees are American League East Division rivals.

A call placed to Fortese’s family on Friday was not returned.

A website — http://mattfortese.com — has been created to raise money for Fortese’s medical expenses.

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— Dan Dearth

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