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Two attorneys charged with assault after allegedly getting into fist fight at Bergen County Courthouse


APRIL 29, 2015, 5:13 PM    LAST UPDATED: WEDNESDAY, APRIL 29, 2015, 5:13 PM


Two attorneys were arrested and charged with simple assault on Wednesday after they got into a heated dispute that turned into a fist fight at the Bergen County Courthouse in Hackensack, authorities and witnesses said.

Costantino Fragale, 42, and Jeffrey Mandel, 43, were in a deposition in a room on the fourth floor about 1 p.m. when the dispute erupted, said Anthony Cureton, spokesman for the Bergen County Sheriff’s Department, which is in charge of security at the courthouse.

“There were verbal arguments, and there was a fight,” Cureton said. He said he did not know what caused the dispute.

Witnesses said they heard a commotion in a jury-deliberation room that doubles as an attorney conference room, and later saw one of the attorneys had a bloodied face. More than a dozen sheriff’s officers showed up at the scene and broke up the fight, they said.

Fragale and Mandel were later released without bail.