Groom accused of touching off brawl by groping pregnant waitress at reception pleads guilty



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PITTSBURGH — A groom accused of touching off a brawl when he groped a pregnant waitress at his wedding reception pleaded guilty to lesser charges. Also, all charges were dropped against his brother, a state trooper who had been accused of assaulting police who intervened.

The 33-year-old groom, Mark Williams, of Crafton, pleaded guilty to public drunkenness and disorderly conduct. One of his guests, Brian Taylor, 31, of McKees Rocks, pleaded guilty to disorderly conduct and criminal mischief. Both were fined a total of $600 plus court costs, and ordered to pay for a car damaged during the fracas.

They had been charged with riot, aggravated assault and more serious charges following the fight early Sept. 2 after Williams' wedding cruise.

David Williams — the groom's 35-year-old brother and an off-duty state trooper who lives in Plum — also faced charges of obstructing law enforcement and disorderly conduct before all charges against him were withdrawn.

"He heard his brother was involved in some trouble with police and he went down to render aid as appropriate," said David Shrager, the trooper's attorney. "I don't think anybody did anything wrong, and the charges were dismissed."

State police spokeswoman Maria Finn said the trooper will return to duty immediately, though an internal investigation was continuing.

Allegheny County prosecutors said the case largely fell apart because the 19-year-old waitress decided not to testify. She had told police that the groom got "handsy" with her so she called her boyfriend, who arrived and fought with the groom and Taylor once the boat docked. The boyfriend wasn't charged.

Edyta Williams, the bride, said the incident involving the waitress was a "significant misunderstanding" saying she "never doubted" her new husband.

"Like she said, she never doubted me once," Mark Williams told reporters.

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