THE BRONX — A Swiss tourist who was in town visiting his girlfriend died Friday morning after he fell during a fight outside a Belmont bodega and hit his head — just a day before he was supposed to go home, police said.
The 37-year-old man, whose name was not immediately released, was outside Guerrero Deli, 2334 Washington Ave., shortly after midnight when he got into an argument with another man, the NYPD said.
According to sources, the victim walked away, but kept arguing with the suspect. He then circled back to the suspect and ripped off his shirt.
Video shows the victim look away for a second as he approached the suspect, who reared back and punched him in the face, sending him to the pavement, where investigators believe he hit his head.
"They were about to lock up," bodega manager William Guerrero, 45, said. "Then they went outside. The one who died took his shirt off. He went down with one punch."
The victim, who was born in Italy and lived in Switzerland, suffered head trauma and was taken to nearby St. Barnabas Hospital, where he was pronounced dead, police said.
He had been in The Bronx visiting his girlfriend who lived in the area and was supposed to return home Friday, the NYPD said.
His assailant ran north on Washington Avenue and remained at large later Friday morning, police said.
Investigators released surveillance photos of a man with a large afro and star tattoos on his shoulders whom they wanted to question in connection to the slaying, police said.
The subject of the photos was not identified as a suspect.
Neither the Swiss nor Italian consulates in New York could not be reached for comment. Staff at Guerrero Deli declined to comment.
Anyone with information should contact Crime Stoppers at (800) 577-TIPS (8477).