The group’s reign atop the charts came to an abrupt end the following month, when lead singer Trainor attempted to murder Phillip Pixa, a documentary filmmaker and journalist covering Port-of-Call’s tour.

Allegedly, Trainor had been drinking and had narcotics in his system while reading Nietszche, something that his bandmates confirmed was a regular occurrance. An argument with bassist Joyeuse over whether the members of Port-of-Call were wealthy and powerful enough to be beyond the concept of good and evil ensued. At some point, Pixa was called in to join the discussion, and some time thereafter Trainor produced a shotgun. Both Pixa and Joyeuse claimed that Trainor played with the weapon, ejecting several live rounds, before abruptly declaring that he would test his theory by seeing if he could get away with killing Pixa.

Miraculously, the weapon was loaded with birdhot rather than buckshot, which left Pixa with serious but not fatal injuries in his hand and right arm. Accounts differ with how the other members of Port-of-Call reacted to the shooting, with Joyeuse claiming that he ran and hid and Pixa insisting that the whole band and several roadies proceeded to hunt him like an animal.

In any case, Pixa ran into a December snowstorm with no proper winter attire, and was suffering from frostbite when he was finally able to flag down a car nearly five miles down the road from the cabins the band had rented. The driver took Pixa to the nearest aid, a ranger station, where first aid was administered. Due to the storm, he was not able to be evacuated for several hours, and the first law enforcement on the scene with Port-of-Call were rangers, who arrested the band members despite not having the legal authority to do so.

Phillip Pixa survived, though he lost three fingers on his right hand and part of his left ear. The legal situation took months to wrangle out, due to conflicting jurisdictional issues and other oddities, but Trainor was ultimately tried for attempted murder, aggrivated assault, and resisting arrest. The other members were seperately tried as accessories.

John Trainor was convicted and eventually served seventeen months behind bars, a sentance criticized by the media as laughably light. Chis Joyeuse and the other band members were acquitted of all charges. Port-of-Call was disbanded for nearly ten years, and when it was reformed it was without its lead singer, serving more as a tribute band than anything.

For his part, Trainor never commented on the events of that night other than a cryptic remark made over a hot mike after refusing to answer a question: “I knew what I was doing.”

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