He says he looked down to light a smoke and that's when his 'friend' blindsided him

A disagreement between friends at a party Tuesday east of Bellingham turned into a fistfight and landed one man in the emergency room with several broken bones on the left side of his face and impaired eyesight.

The victim and another man both told Whatcom County Sheriff's deputies they were close friends and were at a party at 4575 Sand Road early Tuesday morning, according to probable cause statement provided by Undersheriff Jeff Parks.

During a conversation, the friend reportedly told the victim that he didn't help him enough with "engine stuff," and the victim told him to stop complaining.

The victim said he then looked down to light a cigarette, according to the report, and the friend "blindsided" him, punching him hard on the left side of the face and head-butting him to the ground. The victim said he tried to protect himself and attempted to return punches, but he kept getting hit in the face.

The homeowner's son asked the friend to leave, and he walked out, according to the report. Witnesses drove the victim to the emergency department at St. Joseph's hospital in Bellingham and carried him in because he was unable to see and walk on his own. X-rays showed he had several fractures, his face was swollen and he was barely able to open his left eye, according to the report.

Deputies contacted William Christopher Marglon, 20, Tuesday afternoon at work. Marglon told deputies and the victim had a "drunken, stupid" argument and said he threw the first punch, but he thought the victim had head-butted him and returned punches.

A laceration on Marglon's forehead was "more likely than not" consistent with the victim's account of Marglon delivering the headbutt, deputies reported, and also said his knuckles still red and slightly swollen.

Deputies believed Marglon was the primary aggressor in the fight, according to the report, and he was arrested and booked into Whatcom County Jail on suspicion of second-degree assault.