Case # 17WF1635
Date: August 4, 2017
MAN TO BE ARRAIGNED FOR INVOLUNTARY MANSLAUGHTER AFTER PUNCHING SEAL BEACH BAR PATRON IN THE FACE WHICH RESULTED IN VICTIM’S DEATH
SANTA ANA, Calif. – A man is scheduled to be arraigned today for involuntary manslaughter after punching a bar patron in the face, resulting in the victim’s death.
Matthew Paul Meier, 32, Seal Beach
Charged today with the following felony counts:
- Involuntary manslaughter
- Assault with force likely to produce great bodily injury
- Causing great bodily injury (coma)
Nine years in state prison
Aug. 4, 2017, time to be determined
Department CJ-1, Central Jail, Santa Ana
Circumstances of the Case
- On July 18, 2017, at approximately 1:20 a.m., Meier is accused of socializing at a Seal Beach bar called Clancy’s, where he was also employed.
- The defendant is accused of punching 46-year-old James Tinsman once in the face with a closed fist, causing the victim to lose consciousness, fall backwards, and strike his head on the pavement outside of the bar.
- Witnesses called 911 and emergency medical responders took the victim to a local hospital.
- Tinsman died later that day as a result of severe head trauma sustained during the assault.
- In the early morning hours of Aug. 2, 2017, Meier was arrested by the Seal Beach Police Department (SBPD), who investigated this case.
When a person commits an unlawful killing but does not intend to kill and does not act with conscious disregard for human life, then the crime is involuntary manslaughter. In this case, there is no evidence that defendant intended to kill the victim or was aware of the risk to human life caused by his act of punching the victim one time. Therefore, involuntary manslaughter and assault with force likely to produce great bodily injury are the appropriate charges.
Prosecutor: Senior Deputy District Attorney Nicole Nicholson, West Justice Center