Man, 25, attacked in Cranleigh 'lucky to be alive'
A 25-year-old who suffered a broken neck during a "nasty assault" is lucky to be alive, police said.
The man was punched to the ground during a fight outside the Cranley Hotel, Cranleigh, Surrey.
Police said doctors told them the victim would be dead if a bone fragment had moved in another direction.
The man is being treated at the Royal Surrey County Hospital, Guildford, for fractures to his neck and a broken jaw. Detectives have appealed for witnesses.
Det Con Dave Pellatt, of Surrey Police, said: "This was a nasty assault which has left the victim in a neck brace and requiring constant care for the next six months.
"Doctors have said that if a fragment of bone in his neck had travelled in the other direction, it would have severed his spinal cord and he would be dead.
"Unfortunately we have very little information about the circumstances of this assault at the moment, so we are appealing to anyone with any information to come forward as soon as possible."
The force has just released details of the attack which took place at about 01:00 BST on Saturday.