ABC6 Exclusive: Pawtucket Man Beaten After Brain Surgery

     Mario Rios says he's lucky to be even talking and walking. That's because just last week, he had brain surgery for a health condition. Days after, he was attacked, and it put him right back into the hospital.

     “They snuck up behind me and just started hitting me. He punched me, and the minute that I got punched, I went down and he started stomping on me,” Rios told ABC6 about his ordeal.

     It's the last thing Mario Rios expected when he stopped to get a pack of cigarettes at the corner store a few blocks away from his Pawtucket home.

     The other shocker is the person he says was brutally attacking him was his childhood friend.

     “I turned back and noticed that he was a lot taller than usual.”

     He's talking about 25-year old Max McCaughey. Rios says the two were friends. But two years ago, they became enemies after Rios got into a fight with McCaughey's father. For that, Rios spent a year in jail.

     “I think that's why he came back,” Rios explained, to get revenge. But Rios says his former friend was out to kill. “He hit me on my left side. He knew what side to hit me on.”

     The left side of his head is where Rios had brain surgery just last week, to remove a non-cancerous tumor. The surgical wound was still fresh and his healing was far from over.

     With one swift kick to the head: “It actually took the staples out of my head. And they ended up having to put staples in and he hit my left eye and it swelled up.”

     It also caused bleeding on his brain. It was a revenge attack that could have left Rios dead. Now, he just wants justice.     

      “I did my time, so he needs to cash in some time himself.”

     McCaughey was charged with felony assault. He's being held without bail. As for Rios, he's on the mend. Doctors are hopeful he'll make a full recovery.