College basketball coach arrested in fatal attack on Boca man in New York

An assistant college basketball coach at Wake Forest University is suspected of punching and killingBoca Raton-area man during an encounter on a New York City street corner early Sunday.

Jamill Jones, 35, of Kernersville, N.C., turned himself in Thursday, New York City police said. He faces a charge of assault after he allegedly punched  Sandor Szabo, 35, on a street corner in the borough of Queens.

Jones is an assistant men’s basketball coach at the Winston-Salem, N.C., school, a person with knowledge of the investigation said Thursday evening. Jones is in his second season with the program, according to a biography on the school’s athletic website. 

He joined Wake Forest in 2017 after previously working as an assistant coach at the University of Central Florida, Virginia Commonwealth University and Florida Gulf Coast University in Fort Myers.

"We have just been made aware of this matter and we are gathering information,” the Wake Forest athletic department said in a statement Thursday night. "We will make a further statement after we learn more about the matter."

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A Twitter account for Jones has been deactivated. 

Accompanied by an attorney, Jones turned himself in at New York City Police Precinct 114 in Astoria, authorities said. It was not clear why Jones was in New York City, or what his motive may have been.  

Police said Szabo was in New York over the weekend to attend a wedding and had called for a ride-sharing service at about 1:15 a.m. Sunday to take him to his hotel from the one where his brother was staying in Long Island City, a neighborhood about one-half mile east of Manhattan.

Family members believe he was knocking on car windows to find out which ride was his when he knocked on the window of an SUV. 

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Authorities alleged that Jones was its driver, and that he got out of the vehicle and punched Szabo.

Szabo hit his head on the pavement as he fell backward and lost consciousness, according to a police statement. 

He was taken to a hospital in critical condition. He died Tuesday.

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Szabo worked as a marketing professional and “did everything” at What If Media, a digital marketing firm, according to the company’s CEO, Josh Gillon. 

Gillon said Szabo lived with his brother in Boca Raton and worked remotely for What If, which is based in Fort Lee, N.J., near New York. He said Szabo had been a Boca Raton-based company’s liaison to What If for about five years before moving over to the firm.

The company posted a notice of his death on the company’s Facebook page. 

“He was critical in helping our our company’s recent rapid growth,” the Facebook posting said. “Our company has about 25 employees, all of whom are very close; he was part of our family.” 

Szabo had a love of “fish, fishing and cooking,” the company said. 

Staff Writer Ian Cohen contributed to this report.


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