SUPERIOR, Mont. — A Montana man is accused of assaulting a teenage boy during the national anthem at the Mineral County Fairgrounds last weekend, according to KPAX.
Witnesses told deputies the suspect grabbed, picked up and slammed the boy on the ground — apparently because he did not remove his hat during the national anthem.
Within minutes after dropping her son off at the fairgrounds, Megan Keeler says she received a call saying her son was on his way to the hospital.
“Dude come up and grabbed him by his neck, picked him up and threw him to the ground head first,” Keeler told KPAX.
The suspect, Curt Brockway, is accused of assaulting the 13-year-old.
Witnesses say Brockway tried to justify his actions because the boy was disrespecting the flag by not removing his hat during the national anthem.
“He’s deathly afraid of strangers. He doesn’t remember anything. All the witnesses I have talked to said this was completely random,” Keeler said.
“There was no exchange — nothing. He targeted Wally and took him down.”
The boy was flown to Sacred Heart Children’s Hospital in Spokane, Washington, after receiving temporal skull fractures.
Keeler says the child was bleeding from his ear for nearly six hours after the incident.
He since has been released from the hospital and is back home where he will continue healing.
Brockway was arrested and made his initial court appearance on Monday in Mineral County.
“I want to know Curt is put away and I would like compensation for the damages and bills,” Keeler said. “But most of all, my son to heal.”
The state requested Brockway’s bond be set to $100,000, but a judge ruled Brockway can be released on his own recognizance.
This is not Brockway’s first run-in with police. KPAX obtained court documents from a 2010 incident in which he pleaded guilty to an assault with a weapon charge.
In that 2010 incident, Brockway pulled up to a parked vehicle, got out and pulled a gun on a family and said he was going to kill them.
Brockway’s friend persuaded him to put away his weapon and leave.
He was sentenced to 10 years with the Montana Department of Corrections, all of which were suspended.