Olympics

Kerrigan's brother freed on bail in dad's assault

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BOSTON (AP)

The brother of figure skater Nancy Kerrigan, charged with assaulting his father in their home shortly before he died, was released from custody Wednesday after his family posted his $10,000 bail.

Daniel Kerrigan, 70, died last month after a fight with his son, Mark Kerrigan. Prosecutors charged Mark Kerrigan with assault and have said they are considering whether to upgrade the charge.

Kerrigan, 45, was freed on bail a day after he completed a psychiatric evaluation at Bridgewater State Hospital. As a condition of his release, he must wear a global positioning device and be monitored for alcohol consumption.

Nancy Sterling, a spokeswoman for the Kerrigans, said the family is ``delighted to have Mark back with them.''

A judge ruled last week, over the objections of prosecutors, that Kerrigan can return to live with his mother in the family's Stoneham home, where the alleged assault took place.

A state medical examiner ruled that Daniel Kerrigan's cause of death was ``cardiac dysrhythmia'' - a loss or interruption of a normal heartbeat that can lead to cardiac arrest - after a physical altercation with neck compression that damaged his windpipe. The findings also noted that the elder Kerrigan had high blood pressure and clogged arteries.

The Kerrigan family disputes the findings and says Daniel Kerrigan had a pre-existing heart condition.

Daniel Kerrigan was found unconscious on the floor Jan. 24 by police responding to an emergency call. He was taken to a hospital and pronounced dead.

Police said Mark Kerrigan appeared intoxicated when he was found on a couch in the basement.

``He stated that he wanted to use the phone and his father would not let him,'' the arresting officer wrote in a report. ``He said he struggled with his father and put his hands around his father's neck and his father fell to the floor.''

Kerrigan is due in Woburn District Court for a pretrial hearing March 9.

His sister Nancy is a two-time Olympic medal winner in figure skating who was notoriously clubbed in the knee during practice at the U.S. Championships in 1994.

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