Update: Tip of man's nose bitten off in Hardeeville brawl

rlurye@islandpacket.comJanuary 15, 2014 

Five men were arrested after a fight Tuesday in Hardeeville in which the tip of a man's nose was bitten off, according to police.

Anthony Peterson, 24, and his brother, 23-year-old Jason Peterson, were with relatives at a home in the 700 block of Shirley Street shortly before 4 p.m., according to Lt. Arnold Middleton of the Hardeeville Police Department. All were drinking except Anthony Peterson, Middleton said.

The dispute might have started when Jason Peterson tried to drive his cousin to another relative's home, Middleton said.

The cousin, 25-year-old Danten Hallman, suddenly punched Jason Peterson in the eye, Peterson told police. Hallman's father, Wendell, then picked up a 2-by-4 and began to hit several people, Middleton said.

At some point during the fight, Danten Hallman bit Anthony Peterson's nose, according to Middleton. Officers did not recover the missing piece at the scene, he said.

"It's still up in the air how it all started," Middleton said.

The two Peterson brothers left to drive to Coastal Carolina Hospital, where Anthony Peterson received treatment, then was taken to the Medical University of South Carolina, Middleton said. Jason Peterson was charged with disorderly conduct.

While at the scene, police charged Danten Hallman and Wendell Hallman, 47, with assault and battery of a high and aggravated nature.

Before officers left the Shirley Street home, the Petersons' father, James, arrived intoxicated and unable to stand on his own, Middleton said. He was charged with public intoxication.

Police initially planned to charge Anthony Peterson with disorderly conduct but later determined he played a greater role in the fight, Middleton said. He was arrested Wednesday and charged with assault and battery of a high and aggravated nature.

Anthony Peterson and the Hallmans are being held at the Jasper County Detention Center, with bail set at $50,000 each, according to court records.

Middleton said an investigation of the fight continues and more charges could follow.

Follow reporter Rebecca Lurye on Twitter at twitter.com/IPBG_Rebecca.

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