CHARLESTON, S.C. (WCIV) - Police arrested a man Friday night and charged him with assault in the sucker punch incident on King Street in downtown Charleston that hospitalized a man last weekend.
According to police, 27-year-old James Hutton surrendered to police Friday night and was charged with second-degree assault and battery. Sutton is one of the men depicted in surveillance videos released earlier in the week, police added.
He was lodged in the Charleston County Detention Center overnight.
At a hearing Saturday morning, Hutton was given a $20,000 surety bond and he was ordered to avoid any contact with the victims.
Police say Hutton hit 26-year-old Billy Schilling, of Bluffton. According to Schilling's wife, the violence started when the men Hutton was with made lewd comments towards her and her husband called them out on it.
The two groups kept walking past each other, Ashley Schilling said, but then one of the men turned around, ran back into Schilling's group, and hit Billy Schilling.
Ashley Schilling described the attacker as a linebacker. That wasn't far from the truth, based on Charleston police's arrest. According to the University of Gamecocks' website, Hutton is a former walk-on fullback.
"The guy punched him in the face as hard as I've ever seen. My husband fell back on the ground. He fell, lost consciousness, blood coming out from his mouth and ears," she said. "I honestly thought he was dead. It was the worst moment in my life."
Lying on the cement bruised, bloodied, and with a cracked skull, Billy Schilling remained motionless for several minutes.
"To see him lying on the ground and to think he was dead, your whole life flashes before your eyes. You think to yourself, 'This can't be it. Someone can't just come up and take someone's life like this. It can't be it,'" said Ashley Schilling.
Luckily, Billy Schilling is expected to make a full recovery.