Charges have now been filed in an attack at a Minnesota bar that left nationally known comedian Josh Blue with a mild concussion
Blue, who grew up in Minnesota and made a big splash by winning the 2006 season of Last Comic Standing, had done a set the night of July 17 at Joke Joint Comedy Club in St. Paul.
Afterward he was at Hot Rods Bar and Grill on the city's University Avenue, according to criminal charges filed Thursday. Shortly before midnight Blue was in the bathroom when someone came up and punched him in the face, twice, the charges say.
The person took his wallet and ran out to a vehicle that drove away, the complaint continues.
"Quite a homecoming," Blue wrote on Facebook at the time. "One night I’m performing to an awesome sold-out crowd at the Joke Joint Comedy Club in St Paul and the next I’m being assaulted and robbed at Hot Rods."
Blue went to the emergency room and was diagnosed with a mild concussion, and had a bump on his forehead, the charges say. His wallet was found the next day by a dog walker, but without the $700 cash that had been inside it.
Police got tips from the public and checked surveillance footage from Hot Rods, and on Aug. 29 arrested 35-year-old Anthony Deberry.
A witness at Hot Rods that night said Blue didn't appear to do anything to provoke the attack. But Deberry told investigators Blue "disrespected" him, so he punched Blue (but just once) and took $79 that was in Blue's pocket, according to the charges. Deberry also denied stealing the wallet.
Deberry is charged with one count of aggravated robbery, a felony. It carries a sentence of up to 20 years in prison and/or a $35,000 fine if there's a conviction.
Blue graduated from Como Park Senior High School in 1997, the Pioneer Press reported, and now lives in Denver with his kids. Blue has cerebral palsy, which he doesn't shy away from talking about – either in his act or away from the stage.
"Any joke I tell comes from the perspective of someone with cerebral palsy," he told WebMD, which noted 1.5 to 2 million people have the movement disorder. "When I walk around stage, people can't take their eyes off me,"