College basketball coach pleads not guilty in punch that killed tourist

Andy Mead  YCJ  Icon Sportswire

A college basketball coach who police say threw a punch that killed a New York City tourist has pleaded not guilty to an assault charge. He turned himself into authorities on Thursday.

Police said 35-year-old Sandor Szabo was punched in the face Sunday on 29th Street near 41st Avenue in Long Island City, Queens.

Sandor Szabo, 35, died on Tuesday after being taken off life support, his family told the New York Daily News.

Szabo, who was in town for a wedding, had knocked on a window of an SUV he apparently thought was his Uber ride, his family said.

Police said the suspect left the scene in a white SUV.

Wake Forest released a statement. Szabo fell, hit his head on the pavement and lost consciousness. He was ordered to return to court on October 2.

In a statement, Wake Forest said the school would comment further once it gathered more information.

"The court made the proper ruling with the charges, and the District Attorney's office made the proper ruling with the charges", the lawyer, Alain Massena, said.

Jones coached at FGCU from 2013-2015. He was previously an assistant coach at UCF, VCU and Florida Golf Coast University. His family says he was visiting NY from Boca Raton, Florida, for a wedding.

Jones joined the Wake Forest basketball program in May 2017, according to the team's website.

Szabo was "super outgoing, friendly, and an incredibly smart businessman", his digital marketing company, What If Media Group, wrote in a Facebook post. He was always upbeat, positive, kind and caring.

"His attractive spirit and his love of life will remain with us", the company said.



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