ALLEGAN, Mich. (WOOD) — A man has been charged for the assault of an elderly veteran in 2021, deputies said.

Richard Lee-Raymond Ward-Perry, 24, of Battle Creek, was charged Wednesday with assault with intent to do great bodily harm less than murder and felonious assault according to the Allegan County Sheriff’s Office.

The charges stem from an assault that happened on Nov. 3, 2021 at a Circle K gas station on M-89 near US-131 in Otsego Township. William “Bill” Simpson, an 86-year-old veteran, was pulling up to a gas pump at the same time as Ward-Perry when an argument broke out, according to the sheriff’s office. Ward-Perry hit Simpson in the face, deputies said, leaving him with severe facial injuries. He was taken to the hospital.

Simpson was later released from the hospital and talked to News 8, where he explained his side of the story. He said he would be willing to forgive the suspect.

Photos of Bill Simpson, an 86-year-old veteran who was attacked at a gas station near Otsego. (courtesy)

“All I would like to do is to have the guy apologize to me for doing this and then go on his way,” he said in the 2021 interview.

Simpson later died from causes not directly related to the assault, according to the Allegan County Sheriff’s Office.