Man convicted of involuntary manslaughter in Ottobar stabbing

A Parkville man was convicted of involuntary manslaughter Tuesday in the stabbing death of an Ottobar employee outside the venue last fall.

Nicholas Brandon Heath, 33, was acquitted of murder and other charges in Baltimore Circuit Court in the September 2014 death of 35-year-old Tom Malenski at the Remington club, said his attorney, Margaret Mead.


Mead had argued that Heath never intended to harm anyone, and was defending himself after things turned ugly when his friend was kicked out of the bar at 2549 N. Howard St. She said that her client was overcharged.

"In my opinion it was a very good classic self-defense case," Mead said.

Heath also was convicted of second-degree assault related to another man who was injured in the fight.

Heath faces 10 years in prison on each count when he's sentenced on Jan. 7, although Mead said she plans to file an appeal. She said the jury should not have been able to consider assault charges related to the second victim, as Heath was charged solely with attempted murder against that victim.

Police had said that Heath's friend was removed from the bar after he got into an argument with another patron that escalated. Though it was Malenski's night off from the club, he stepped in to help remove Heath's friend.

Assistant State's Attorney Traci Robinson said in her opening statement that Heath stabbed Malenski and the second victim as they walked back to the bar after removing Heath's friend.

Mead described the altercation differently, saying Heath feared Malenski and the other employee were going to attack him, so he swung his knife to ward them off. He used a curved knife that's designed to wound, but not kill, Mead said.

"My client is extremely remorseful for this," she said.

In statement, State's Attorney Marilyn Mosby said: "This is an unfortunate incident that did not have to happen. I am grateful that some sort of justice has been served on the victims' behalf."