WHEELING, W. Va. — A jury heard opening statements and testimony from witnesses in the trial of a shale industry worker accused of fatally beating a Wheeling Jesuit University student.

Craig Peacock of Clewiston, Fla., is charged with fatally beating Kevin Figaniak of Perkasie, Pa., during a confrontation in Wheeling.

File photo

WJU lacrosse player Kevin Figaniak died a day after the Aug. 31 fight.

A perceived insult towards pipeliners is what lawyers said started the fight that resulted in the death of Figaniak, who sustained head injuries from repeated blows after being knocked unconscious on Sept. 1, 2013.

Testimony from two bartenders, a paramedic and the lead detective for the Wheeling Police Department were heard in court Tuesday. The jury also showed surveillance video of the altercation.

Ohio County assistant prosecutor Shawn Turak said a group of oil and gas workers and two WJU students met at the corner of Carmel Road in Wheeling.

The pipeliners had left the Owl’s Nest bar as Figaniak and his friend were leaving the Ye Olde Alpha.

The argument began after one student mocked the gas workers and continued down the street until Figaniak shoved Jarrett Chandler, who then responded with a punch to the face that knocked Figaniak down. Chandler was already convicted of misdemeanor involuntary manslaughter and has served his time.

Both the prosecutors and the defense agree three different people caused injuries to Figaniak’s head and all five young men were drunk at the time of the fight.

Court ended proceedings at around 6 p.m. but more witnesses are scheduled to testify at 9 a.m. on Wednesday.

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  • Andrea

    Looks like Judge Jimmy can't read. It wasn't Kevin who mouthed off. F_ _ _ Head

  • Nia Belon

    The ends of justice must be served. That means he needs to be convicted and put under the jail. This is worng. I pray the jury does the right thing. A vital and senseless act resutled in the loss of a valuablel life of a young college student with lots of potential. What potential did fricking Mr. Peacock Pipeline have? Clue me in on that one. The entire Wheeling Jesuit Family is with the Figaniak family and we are all praying for them.

    • Tracy

      Mr. freaking pipeliner tyler that you are referring to has a great future ahead of him! There is family on two sides of this so please keep your negativity to yourself!

  • BS

    Sticks and stones will break my bones but words will never hurt me. the guy should have walked away instead of beating a man to death. This isn't the Wild West. I hope this killer is burned at the stake. if not, some ole fashioned country justice should be in store for him.

  • Judge Jimmy

    Looks like Figaniak's mouth made a debt his a** couldn't pay.

  • Fred

    One of the most common crimes in W.Va. is bartenders serving alcohol to people who are already intoxicated.

  • Where is the justice for the dead?

    They killed a man because you thought this was Medieval times. You should have walked away. All deserve the same fate. Repeated blows to the head until the subject is unconscious.

    • J the C

      This is rather poor reporting, but I assume that all of the witnesses so far have been prosecution witnesses, and that this article is based solely on their testimony, and a couple of stipulations. The surveillance video could be very telling. My guess is that this is manslaughter, not murder.

    • scott

      There is no excuse for killing someone because they taunted you. There's alson no excuse to taunt someone.

      Decisions affect life and sometimes the loss of life.