Richard Portillo, at 46 years old, has died one week after being punched in the head by a teenaged goalie. Portillo issued the 17-year old a yellow card for shoving an opposing player. At that point, the player (who as a minor will not be named in the case) punched Portillo in the head. This all occurred on a Utah playing field on April 27.
The referee then slipped into a coma, suffered massive swelling of the brain and tragically passed away on Saturday night, May 4.
KTUL, via the Associated Press:
The teenager was playing goalie during a game at Eisenhower Junior High School in Taylorsville when Ricardo Portillo issued him a yellow card for pushing an opposing forward trying to score a goal. In soccer, a yellow card is given as a warning to a player for an egregious violation of the rules. Two yellow cards lead to a red card and expulsion from the game.
The teenager, quite a bit heavier than Portillo, began arguing with the referee, then unleashed a punch to his face. Portillo seemed fine at first, then asked to be held because he felt dizzy. He sat down and started vomiting blood, triggering his friend to call an ambulance.
According to authorities, the minor was already under lock and key on charges of aggravated assault. However, now that Portillo has passed, those charges may be re-evaluated and may be amplified.