POSTED: Thursday, May 9, 2013 - 8:00am
UPDATED: Thursday, May 9, 2013 - 11:30am
NBC NATIONAL NEWS — A seventeen year old accused of punching a soccer referee, causing his death, was charged with homicide by assault, a third-degree felony, in juvenile court Wednesday.
Salt Lake County District Attorney Sim Gill said his office will seek to have the teen certified as an adult.
Ricardo Portillo, 46, was refereeing a youth soccer match on April 27 when he called a foul against the 17-year-old goalie. After issuing the goalie a yellow card, the teen responded by punching Portillo "in the rear jaw area with a closed fist," according to court documents.
Witnesses told police Portillo was struck in the face as he was writing notes about the yellow card he had just issued.
Doctors at Intermountain Medical Center later told investigators that Portillo suffered a traumatic brain injury, court records state.
Portillo remained in a coma for a week before he died. An autopsy determined he died "as a result of injuries related to the blow to his head," according to court records.
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