LAUREL COUNTY, Ky. (WYMT) - A Laurel County teen fights for his life. Police say the 17-year-old was beaten in a parking lot.
They arrested 20-year-old Shawn Couch and charged him with assault.
Couch talked to WYMT from jail. He said he is sorry the teen got hurt, but the plan all along was to see a fight.
Around one in the morning in the Big A's BBQ parking lot on Philpot Road, Laurel County Sheriff's Deputies say a group of people met for a fight.
"I'm sorry. I regret it. I didn't know all of that was going to happen," said Shawn Couch.
Couch rode there with a friend. Sheriff's deputies say Couch seriously hurt the 17 year old boy during the fight. The teen, whose name is not released, was flown to UK Medical Center.
"I didn't think it was going to go that far. I didn't know he was going to end up in the hospital or anything," Couch said.
Investigators say the 17-year-old was actually there to meet Couch's friend, but it was Couch who threw the teenager to the ground.
Couch claims self-defense but deputies charged him with assault.
"I didn't know any of that was going to happen at all. I was just trying to watch out for my well-being," Couch said.
"It's unfortunate to see anybody try to resolve their problems in this fashion. You don't meet people to fight people," said Gilbert Acciardo, Laurel County Sheriff's Department.
Deputies say they are still investigating exactly what led to the fight.
"That's still currently under investigation to determine why they were even meeting there to fight," said Deputy Acciardo.
"I regret even going, kind of, because it drug out this far. I didn't know he was going to get hurt as bad as he did," said Couch.
Couch has pleaded not guilty to the assault charge. His bond is $50,000 full cash.
Because deputies are not releasing the injured teen's name, we were unable to contact his family for comment. Deputies say the teen has life-threatening injuries.