“Totally uncalled for:” 58-year-old man in ICU after altercation outside south side bar turns physical

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MILWAUKEE -- Battered and attacked on his birthday, a Milwaukee man is now hospitalized after a situation escalated at a south side bar.

"He is in intensive care. He's in a lot of pain," said Paula Poff, the victim's wife. "His nose is broken in several places. His tear duct is broken and we just found out his ribs on the right side were broken."

Hooked up to machines, barely able to open his eyes, Paula Poff said Tuesday, September 12th her husband, Ralph, has a long recovery ahead of him. 

The 58-year-old man was badly injured after a joyous night took a turn for the worst.

"Wanted to go out to the bars, hit a few bars and come back. Just wanted to have a good time," said Poff.

Instead, a verbal altercation that happened near 29th and Burnham, turned physical.

29th and Burnham

"Slowly things started escalating," said Elizabeth Montes, whose family owns the bar. "There was a young woman here with her boyfriend and he was inviting them for shots."

Somehow the conversation turned to insults inside, which led to violence outside.

"My dad was trying to dissipate the situation," said Montes.

Paula Poff

Poff said as the three left:

"Walked out the door, took the first step down and was blindsided. He is blind on his left side and didn't even see it coming," Poff said. "He went down, lost consciousness for a few seconds, came up swinging -- but they had taken off. He tried to get into the bar, but the door was locked."

"Everybody immediately left and my father closed the business," Montes said.

The victim broke the glass trying to get the owner's attention and back inside. Meanwhile, the suspects took off.

"We need to find these people because that is totally uncalled for," said Poff.

Police said they continue to search for the battery suspect. Poff asked that if you were there that night or know anything about who the suspects are, that you call the authorities.

FOX6 News has been told there was surveillance footage, so hopefully that will help catch those responsible.

29th and Burnham