VIDEO: Bath Twp officers arrested after bar fight in GR

Grand Rapids

GRAND RAPIDS, Mich. (WOOD) — Two Lansing-area police officers were booked into the Kent County jail after a bar fight that was caught on camera.

Online records show Bath Township officers Bryan Miller, 34, and Payton Warner, 25, were arrested after a fight around 1:30 a.m. Wednesday at the Web Bar on Grand Rapids’ northwest side.

The officers, who were in town for training, had told others in the bar they were FBI agents.

The trouble started when the bartender cut off Miller, who video shows was apparently so drunk he could barely stay on his bar stool. The officer became mad. He and his partner were kicked out of the bar, according to a police report. When they returned, they allegedly pushed and punched employees and patrons.

Cameras captured a good portion of the fight, which witnesses say started inside and ended outside.

“I turn the corner and then a few of my close friends and the bartender are in a huge brawl,” Daniel Falicki, who was there, told News 8 Wednesday. “The bartender lost a tooth.”

Falicki said he tried to put a stop to the fight by holding down one of the officers, only to get attacked by the other one.

“I was on top of one of the guys and I’m yelling at him, just saying, ‘Stop fighting, just stop fighting. Look, there’s 15 (of us) to two of you guys. You’re not going to win this.’ And he’s actually listening to me,” he recounted. “And that’s when one of his friends, I guess, got free and his just came up and kicked me right in the face.”

He showed News 8 the marks still on his face from the sole of the cop’s shoe.

The fight ended with the Bath cops being handcuffed by Grand Rapids officers. They continued to be obnoxious while being taken to jail, according to a police report.

bryan miller payton warner
Kent County jail mug shots of Bryan Miller (left) Payton Warner (right), Bath Township police officers who were arrested after a brawl at a Grand Rapids bar. (Oct. 9, 2019)

“I woke up today and I’m reading the news and I’m like, ‘These guys were cops!'” Falicki said. “No one was severely hurt. It was just that these officers, they made just a really, really big mistake and I just hope they learn from that.”

Online records show both men were released from jail Wednesday. Both will likely be arraigned Thursday.  

Bath Township Police Department says the officers were off-duty when the fight happened. The department has started an internal investigation and said in a Wednesday Facebook post that the officers had been placed on administrative leave.

“We know the level of professionalism our community expects of us and we hold our officers to that same standard,” the post read in part.

Copyright 2021 Nexstar Inc. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten, or redistributed.

Know something newsworthy? Report It!

News 8 Links