By Meghan Hurley, CNN
(CNN) – An off-duty sheriff’s deputy was beaten Wednesday evening outside a bar in Kenosha, Wisconsin, while intoxicated, according to a statement from the Lake Country Sheriff’s Office.
Sheriff’s Deputy Ryan Fairbanks, 29, was injured after a confrontation outside K-Mart Liquor Store on Airport Road, which happened around 9:30 p.m. According to Sheriff John Buncich, the deputy was approached by two intoxicated men who began cursing at him and asking for money.
The argument moved inside K-Mart Liquor Store, where the deputy again encountered one of the two drunk men and began talking to him. According to Buncich, the man became increasingly belligerent and, at some point, punched the deputy, knocking him to the ground.
The deputy continued to be assaulted by the man and another drunk man until security guards and a group of patrons helped subdue him, Buncich said.
Tests will be performed to determine whether the man who punched the deputy was under the influence of drugs or alcohol, Buncich said.
The suspect who punched the deputy was arrested immediately after the incident. He is being held on suspicion of substantial battery and disorderly conduct, according to the Lake Country Sheriff’s Office.
Buncich praised the deputies who helped subdue the suspect, describing them as “very brave individuals who, in my estimation, prevented what could have become a much worse situation.”
Buncich offered his full support to the young officer, who has been with the department for over a year.
“In general, the person that attacked him probably wouldn’t be in jail if he wasn’t an off-duty deputy. He’s probably probably just dealing with that kind of issue that a lot of people have: He’s dealing with it now because he’s been assaulted, but all the other things that happen when that kind of stuff happens it should be handled appropriately and should be dealt with through the criminal justice system,” he said.
Buncich said the deputy had been off-duty and in a dressing room inside the store when the incident happened.
Buncich said it is unclear if the deputy will require further medical attention.