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.
"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."
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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.