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Wednesday, September 29, 2004
Following up

Following up on an earlier entry about how Foster Barton, a Marine on leave from Iraq was attacked in the parking lot of Germain Amphitheater in Columbus after a Toby Keith concert. An arrest has now been made.

A man has been arrested and charged in the alleged attack on a Central Ohio soldier at a local concert venue, NBC 4's Monique Ming Laven reported.

Brent Cornwell, 28, of Blacklick, was arrested Tuesday night by Columbus police. He was charged with felonious assault Wednesday morning at a Delaware County Municipal Court video arraignment.

A judge set bond at $15,000. Cornwell was ordered to be on house arrest.

Foster Barton, 19, of Grove City, was on leave from the war in Iraq earlier this month when he said he was beaten in the parking lot after a Toby Keith concert at Germain Amphitheater.

Barton said his attacker beat him up because he was wearing an Operation Iraqi Freedom T-shirt. Barton was beaten so badly that he was knocked unconscious.

Police said witnesses at the scene and the suspect's own family helped police make an arrest, Laven reported. Police said Cornwell, who spent four years in the Army, called a morning radio show last week and said he wanted to give his side of the story, Laven reported.
According to a Columbus police report, six witnesses who didn't know Barton said the person who beat him up was screaming profanities and making crude remarks about U.S. soldiers, Burton reported.

One witness, a friend of the alleged attacker, said Barton hit first. Police said they do not think that witness is credible since the six other witnesses said Barton was hit from behind.

"The witnesses said that the beating and kicking continued even after Mr. Barton was on the ground," Delaware County Prosecutor Dave Yost said. "Anytime you've got somebody kicking at somebody who is on the ground, you've got a very dangerous situation. One well-placed kick can end up being fatal."

When asked by the judge if he had anything to say, Cornwell said, "No, I just can't wait until Mr. Yost hears my side of the story."

Barton's mother said she has a message for her son's attacker, who police said ran into the crowd after the incident and was not immediately arrested.

"He needs our prayers, just like the insurgents, because he's a coward," Cindy Barton said.

Posted by Rob Bernard on Wednesday, September 29, 2004 at 3:18 PM in Ohio

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