Saved by the Bell star Dustin Diamond was sentenced to 120 days in jail on Thursday, convicted of two misdemeanor counts of carrying a concealed weapon and behaving in a disorderly manner, stemming from a Christmas Day bar fight.
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"Let me express just how sorry I am that a night that centers around celebrating peace and love could turn into a night of immense regret for the rest of one’s life," Diamond said at his sentencing. "Even though my intentions were solely to defend a loved one, they nevertheless were the cause of the single most terrifying experience of my entire life."
The actor, who played Samuel "Screech" Powers on the hit teen TV series, was reportedly defending his girlfriend from a group of intoxicated patrons at the Grand Avenue Saloon in Port Washington, Wisc., when he produced a knife and stabbed at one of his attackers. While the judge found Diamond innocent of a felony charge of recklessly endangering safety, the actor still received jail time and was ordered to pay a $1,000 restitution.
"I have managed to go nearly forty years without so much as a jaywalking ticket; to think that one bad decision made in haste, be it ever so noble, could potentially ruin a lifetime of living right, has made me see my life in a completely different way," Diamond continued. "The financial cost alone has had a crippling effect on me, not to mention the impact that my decisions have made on my reputation as an upstanding member of the community."
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The man identified as the stabbing victim told police he did not see Diamond’s knife or initially notice that he had been stabbed. Police said the wounds inflicted by the actor were not life-threatening.
"I want it to be clear that this situation will never be repeated again," Diamond concluded in his statement. "I sincerely apologize to everyone, not just those directly involved and ask for forgiveness for the way the night was handled."
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