A 13-year-old was seriously injured when a man at a Montana rodeo slammed him to the ground after the boy did not remove his hat during a playing of the national anthem, authorities said Tuesday.
Curt James Brockway, 39, was arrested on suspicion of felony assault on a minor following the alleged attack at the rodeo at the Mineral County Fair on Saturday, NBC News reported.
The boy was originally taken to a nearby hospital, but his injuries were so serious that he had to be airlifted to Sacred Heart Children's Hospital in Spokane, Washington, according to a statement by Mineral County Sheriff Mike Boone.
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"He was definitely bleeding out of his ears; he was scared," witness Taylor Hennick told NBC News on Wednesday about the incident. “He seemed shocked and out of it and wondering why he was being hit."
Brockway said he asked the boy to take off his hat, after which the teen cursed at him, Mineral County Attorney Ellen Donohue said in a written statement.