William K ‘Billy’ Busch, 58, is charged with simple assault near St. Louis
The heir to the Anheuser-Busch beer fortune has been accused of assaulting a sixth-grade boy in a school gym.
William K ‘Billy’ Busch, 58, the great-grandson of beer baron Adolphus Busch, is charged with simple assault in the incident during a youth basketball practice in Creve Coeur, Missouri.
Busch bloodied the boy’s nose, dragged him by the front of his shirt and pinned him against a wall before the boy’s father pulled him off, according to police reports reported by the Riverfront Times.
The beer heir’s lawyer has denied the allegations, saying that his client was merely ‘protecting the safety of his son and others involved.
The shocking incident unfolded in November at Chaminade College Preparatory School, a private Catholic school.
The shocking incident unfolded in November at Chaminade College Preparatory School (pictured), a private Catholic school in Creve Coeur on the western outskirts of St. Louis
Busch’s son was in line during basketball practice when he began to scuffle with another boy on the team over who was first, according to police reports.
Busch, who is six feet and 195 pounds, charged over and grabbed the other boy, police said.
‘You f**ker! What do you f**king think you’re f**king doing to my f**king kid?’ Busch yelled, according to the boy’s statement to police.
Surveillance video from the school shows Busch ‘grabbing [the boy] once more and forcing him backwards out of the gymnasium into the lobby,’ the report says.
‘At this point, [the boy] appears to take a swing at Busch in an effort to get away. Busch is seen pushing [the boy] backwards and pinning him against a wall.’
‘Mr. Busch pushed [the boy] into a wall at the base of a stairwell resulting in [the boy] hitting the back of his head against the wall. At that time, [the boy’s] nose began to bleed,’ the police report says.
The boy’s father and a basketball coach rushed to intervene, and the coach ordered Busch out of the gym, cops said.
Busch used his family fortune to found his own St. Louis-based beer company, Kräftig. He is the face of the company and often appears in commercials
The boy’s family were hesitant to press charges, fearing that Busch’s stature would make him difficult to prosecute, but eventually gave the cops their blessing to pursue the case.
Busch told police over the phone that he’d seen the boy hit his son and told him to stop ‘bullying’, and then became a ‘bit angry’ when the 11-year-old boy mouthed off and took a swing at him.
It is not Busch’s first encounter with the law. In 1981, he bit off another man’s earlobe in a bar brawl that reportedly started over accusations of cheating in an arm-wrestling match. He wasn’t charged when police said the other man started the fight.
A year later, Busch beat an assault charge after allegedly punching a fast-food worker in the throat through a drive-thru window. A judge found that prosecutors hadn’t proved the worker was injured.
After Anheuser-Busch was sold to Belgium-based InBev, Busch used the family fortune to found his own St. Louis-based beer company, Kräftig. He is the face of the company and often appears in commercials.
In a statement, his lawyer Scott Rosenblum said: ‘Mr. Busch was unfortunately confronted last November with a situation where his son was bullied — actually sucker-punched — by a much larger middle school student directly in front of him during a school basketball practice.
‘School personnel failed to react, so he did what every parent would have done in that situation. The school’s video of the event clearly shows that Mr. Busch did not act with any maliciousness, and that his actions were directed at protecting the safety of his son and others involved,’ the statement continued.
The father of the boy, Derek Falb, replied with his own lengthy statement asserting that Busch’s son had actually started the altercation.
‘While Mr. Busch may not have liked seeing his son receive a dose of his own medicine, him attempting to resolve his son’s conflict with another 11 year old boy, let alone physically, is shameful,’ Falb said. ‘The fact is a grown man manhandled a child in response to an altercation his son initiated but could not finish.’
Falb said his family has no plans to file a civil suit over the incident, but would cooperate with the criminal prosecution.
Busch is next due in Creve Coeur municipal court at 5pm on Wednesday.