A witness to the last attack in a series of altercations at the Charleston on Bedford Avenue that killed 33-year-old Michael Sapp has come forward with new, disturbing details of what happened. Christopher, who did not want his last name used because he lives in the neighborhood and fears retaliation, said he was just outside of the bar with a few friends last Saturday when two men approached, stopped just outside the fence around the outdoor seating area, and one of them, skinny and bleeding profusely through his white shirt, began yelling at the bouncer to let him in.

The man appears to have been Michael Sapp. Christopher continued:

[Sapp is] like, "I'm gonna fucking kill everybody! Where the fuck is that guy? He needs to come out here right now. I wanna fight him!" He's screaming at everyone and he's cussing. The security guard was like, "Dude, you should leave. You should have never came back. Why did you come back?"

As [Sapp] was screaming and stuff he has blood on his shirt. throughout the entire thing the blood is spreading like he's cut. He's bleeding through his shirt. So I intrude sort of—I'm nosy in a way. I'm like, "Dude you're bleeding you should leave." And my friends are like, "Shut up, don't get involved."

He said Sapp didn't approach the door, but that he stayed just outside the gate, yelling.

People outside were like, "Dude you're ruining everything, just leave. It's not worth it." I swear to God, not even five minutes after that conversation, this guy flies out of the bar with four of his friends. He doesn't say anything. He just straight up goes through the gate and knocks [Sapp] out. Beats his face in, actually. And that's when the security runs up and grabs the guy that punched him, and is like, "Dude! What the hell? You can't"—you know what I mean? He's doing his job.

Christopher describes the attacker as light-but-not-pale-skinned, stocky, about 5-foot-9 and around 220 pounds, and wearing a white T-shirt. This squares with the description given by someone who works on the block and saw the series of fights from a distance. Christopher said the crowd of people on the sidewalk and drinking at the outside tables went "dead silent" the moment the man delivered the punch.

This guy was so scary. He comes out, and his friends are behind him. He literally just ran out and I heard [Sapp's] nose snap and I heard his head hit the floor, that's how hard it was. He broke his face. And then he looked at us outside and he wanted to fight us. Security was like, "You need to go." Everyone was turning away from [the attacker]. I heard someone say, "I didn't see anything. I don't even know what you look like."

Christopher said the attacker "was jumping around and laughing," and boasted, "You shoulda not fucking come back. I told you, you're asking for it." Then, he said, the man's friends pulled him away and they all walked down Bedford toward McCarren Park. The other witness to this moment said the attacker climbed into an SUV and drove off. Meanwhile, the man who had been standing alongside Sapp, also taunting the assailant, suddenly pretended not to know Sapp and slipped back into the bar, Christopher said. Then, he said, "something disgusting happened."

[Sapp is] on the floor, he starts coughing up blood, and he's bleeding from his head or his mouth, and everybody pulls their cellphones out to take pictures or video of him. I was about to call 911 when security told me that an ambulance was on their way. I was like, "Is this really the world we live in?" Everyone is taking pictures. Somebody is like, "World Star Hip Hop!" I was screaming, "Put your cellphones away! Somebody roll him over!"

Christopher's friend pulled him away and they left. He said he has not spoken with police because he fears retaliation by the assailant. Attempts to find photos and video from the scene on social media and photo- and video-sharing platforms have so far been unsuccessful.

The block of Bedford Avenue between N. Seventh and N. Eighth streets was especially crowded because of the Northside Festival that Saturday night and was, by all accounts, chaotic. Several witnesses described another knockout involving two other men, the attacker skinnier than Sapp's but also light-skinned, and the victim an African-American man with short braids or dreadlocks, wearing grey sweatpants, around 11:50 pm.

Witnesses differed on whether that assailant was a Charleston bouncer—four out of five said he was not—but two saw the attacker walk toward N. Seventh Street with a woman, then saw the victim come to after several minutes and walk past a bouncer back into the bar.

One of those witnesses, Joseph Mundola, grew up in the neighborhood in the 1970s and, though he now lives in Ridgewood, comes many evenings to eat pizza across the street at Anna Maria Pizza & Pasta. He said that the neighborhood has grown increasingly violent in recent years, especially at night, and that fights break out frequently at the Charleston. He blames the bouncers.

"The security's not doing their job," he said. "[Officials] need to give 'em a summons and close 'em up."

Michael Kearny and John McGillion, Jr. and Sr. own the Charleston as well as several other bars known for their free-pizza-with-a-drink happy hours. In 2008, a patron of their bar Capone's in Williamsburg, since closed, sued them after he said another bar-goer smashed him in the face with a pint glass, causing injuries that required 50 stitches and surgery to correct. That suit settled out of court in 2010. In January of this year, the State Liquor Authority fined the Charleston $4,000 for several violations, including employing a bouncer who was not registered with the state as a security guard.

Both John McGillions didn't respond to calls for comment at numbers listed for them. Charleston manager David Slifkin declined to comment beyond a statement he issued last week, citing the ongoing investigation, but said he would provide "full access to the witnesses and my staff" once it concludes.

Police said they were called to the block twice that night, once around 12:15 a.m., and a second time at 1:05 a.m. They told Sapp's sister that he was involved in "several fights" and that he was the "verbal aggressor." The first time officers arrived, an NYPD spokeswoman told Gothamist, Sapp refused medical attention and was uncooperative. The second time, around 1:30 a.m., he was near death. Doctors declared him brain dead the following day and disconnected life support two days later.

Sapp's family held a funeral on Friday in the Baychester neighborhood of the Bronx, and he was buried in Farmingdale on Long Island. A friend uploaded a recording of this song by Sapp following his death:

Sapp was an alcoholic who was in only sporadic contact with many of his friends and family members, according to Xenia Bran, an ex-girlfriend. Still, his death came as a shock, and a paucity of information about the police investigation—the NYPD has yet to name a suspect or make an arrest—has left Bran, Sapp's sister, and others trying to piece together his final days. Bran said that she and Sapp dated for a year starting in the summer of 2013, when they both lived in the same Los Angeles neighborhood, and that they both struggled with drinking.

"When he was sober, he was the nicest person," she said. "He was very intellectual, he knew all about history."

At the time of his death, he had been working at The Bagel Store in Williamsburg for about a year, and Bran said she believes that in recent weeks he had been living in a park. His coworkers' descriptions of him as happy to put in long hours are misguided, she said.

"He didn't love working, he just didn't have anywhere else to go," she said.

She said that Sapp, who moved back to New York from LA last year to be closer to his teenage daughter, bristled against structure, a tendency she thinks kept him from sticking with rehab programs or Alcoholics Anonymous meetings. That, she said is at the root of this tragedy.

"If he wouldn't have gone out and drank that night, none of this would have happened," she said. "It's really unfortunate that he didn't get a hold on the disease."

Sapp's father died when he was five, and his mother died when he was 12. Bran said that both deaths hit Sapp hard, but that talked most often about his mother.

"He would hold me tight and tell me, 'Please don't die,'" she said.