A Macomb County man has avoided jail time in an HIV biting case. Forty-five-year-old Daniel Allen, who was initially charged with bioterrorism for biting a neighbor during a fight in front of his Clinton Township home, has been sentenced to 11 months probation.
Allen pleaded no contest to an assault charge on Wednesday – but he, and his attorney James Galen, maintain that Allen was the real victim in this case.
“My client ultimately makes the decision [to plead], but this was nothing more than a gay bashing. My client should have never been charged. In fact, the complaining witness, Mr. Fernandis Junior, should have been charged,” Galen.
“And his wife and son,” added Allen. “Because they came onto my property and attacked me and they gave me injuries,” Allen said.
Apparently Allen and the alleged victim, Winfred Fernandis, had been feuding for some time. In this instance, the neighbors quarreled after a football was thrown on or near Allen’s lawn.
Allen, who is HIV positive, told WWJ’s Florence Walton that he only pled guilty because key witnesses refused to testify. He contends that he never bit his accuser, Winfred Fernandis.
“Mr. Fernandis must have bit his own lip, because my fingers were inside Mr. Fernandis’ mouth. Mr. Fernandis must have bit down on my fingers,” Allen said.
Fernandis did not attend Wednesday’s sentencing, but previously denied Allen’s sexual orientation played any role in the dispute.
The initial charge of bioterrorism was dismissed after the ACLU and other organizations took up Allen’s cause. If Allen successfully completes his probation, the felony assault charge will be reduced to a misdemeanor.