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Jessica Simpson, Ken Paves

Michael Caulfield/WireImage.com

He's the hairstylist to the stars, but Ken Paves just took one for the team.

E! News has learned that Paves was rushed to the hospital early this morning after being injured by paparazzi while leaving a popular restaurant with Jessica Simpson and her entourage.

"There were so many paparazzi waiting for Jessica and trying to get a picture of her that they all started pushing," says an onlooker. "Jessica was ducking down and Ken Paves and her other male friend were trying to cover her and that's when Ken was hit in the face with a camera."

The perfectly coiffed group was leaving Madeo restaurant at 12:15 a.m. Sunday morning when they were mobbed by waiting paparazzi. Paves' face was cut during the melee.

A source tells E! that it seemed like Ken didn't really think much of the blow to the eye at first.  "He seemed shocked at first," says a source. "He said something to the photographer like 'dude, you just hit me' but that's all he really said before getting into the car."

Once Jessica was safely in the back seat and Ken was in the front passenger seat, the other male in Jess' entourage went around to the driver seat. Before he got inside, he got into a fight with another paparazzi.

"It seemed like Jessica's friend was just really frustrated because the photographers were overstepping their bounds and had just hit Ken in the head," says an onlooker.

Once Paves got into the car he probably noticed that the hit to his eye was worse than he originally thought since he was bleeding. "Blood was running down his nose when he was in the car," says a source. "I guess that's when Jess and the driver realized Ken might need to get stitches because they went straight to Cedar Sinai [Medical Center] from the restaurant."

E! News learned that as of 1:15 a.m. Simpson and Paves were still inside the hospital.

-Reporting by Ashley Fultz