Mexican referee Jose Valdemar Hernandez Capetillo died in a hospital in Mexico after being attacked by a player that he red carded during a match.
On the 24th of December Capetillo was assaulted by a player from amateur side Guadalajara during a match in the El Castillo stadium. Capetillo died in the early hours of the 30th of December, after spending a week in a coma.
The President of the professional referees' association AMA Valentin Ramirez issued a statement regarding the incident, as quoted by the Sun.
“Jose Valdemar Hernandez Capetillo, a part-time referee, died in the early hours of yesterday morning as a result of an acute traumatic brain injury he suffered during an assault by a player in the Pemex stadium in Xalapa, Veracruz.
“Action is now being taken to ensure justice is done following the death of our colleague. We have to eradicate incidents of this kind. Rest in peace Jose Valdemar Hernandez Capetillo.”
The player in question was identified by the name of Milton, and is believed to be in custody after being arrested. This is obviously tragic news, but shockingly this type of incident has occurred before in the Mexican league.
In November of last year a referee lost his life after being head-butted by a player he red-carded.
Furthermore, last month in an amateur football match in Fresnillo, in the north central Mexican state of Zacatecas, a fan was shot in the head from close range by an opposition supporter after the pair were involved in a fist fight.
These incidents need to stop, and hopefully there will be a massive clamp down on violence in Mexican football in the coming months.