Soccer Referee Dies After Being Punched By 17 Year Old Player


A Utah referee who was punched by a 17-year-old recreational soccer player has died according to reports.  USA Today is reporting  that 46-year-old Ricardo Portillo of Salt Lake City was refereeing a soccer match when he was punched by a teenage player during a game and later slipped into a coma, police said.

Portillo died at the hospital, where he was being treated.  Police have accused the 17-year-old player of punching Portillo after he called a foul on him and issued him a yellow card.

“The suspect was close to Portillo and punched him once in the face as a result of the call,” Unified police spokesman Justin Hoyal said in a press release.

The teen has been booked into juvenile detention on suspicion of aggravated assault. He will not have his named release because of his age.

Portillo suffered swelling in his brain and had been listed in critical condition before slipping into his coma.