GILMER–A judge sentenced a Canton man to 15 years in prison Monday after the defendant pleaded guilty to assaulting an Upshur County sheriff’s deputy, said District Attorney Billy Byrd.

Brian Leslie Walters, 40, was sentenced by 115th District Judge Lauren Parish for assault against a public servant, said Byrd. The defendant reached a plea bargain before jury selection was to open in the case, the prosecutor said.

Walters admitted assaulting Deputy Josh Lambert last April 15 at the county jail after being arrested at the Midway Truck Stop north of Gilmer on U.S. 271, said Byrd.

Lambert had answered a call reporting “a man running out into trafffic,” and found Walters behind the truck stop, the prosecutor said in a news release.. After being arrested for public intoxication, Walters refused to exit the patrol car at the jail and began fighting Lambert, whose nose was broken when Walters’ head struck it, Byrd said.

Lambert subsequently required surgery, Byrd said.

He represented the prosecution at sentencing. Gilmer attorney Matthew Patton represented Walters.