An 80-year-old man is dead after a dispute over wearing a face mask at a West Seneca, NY, local ABC affiliate WKBW reports, citing authorities.
Prosecutors have charged Donald Lewinski, 65, of West Seneca, with criminally negligent homicide after a dispute over wearing a face-covering left an 80-year-old man dead,” according to the report.
Lewinski, a self-described Trump supporter, was taken into custody Monday following an incident at Pamp’s Red Zone Bar and Grill on Southwestern Boulevard in West Seneca.
According to police, Lewinski got into a verbal confrontation with Rocco Sapienza – another regular at the bar – after Sapienza noticed Lewinski was not wearing a mask while bringing buckets of beer to a band playing outside.
Erie County District Attorney John Flynn said that, at one point, Sapienza got up and confronted Lewinski. That’s when Lewinski stood up and pushed Sapienza “hard” with both hands, the D.A. said. Sapienza fell back and hit his head on the ground.
Sapienza was taken to ECMC, where he was unresponsive for four days. He died on September 30.
The cause of death is blunt force trauma to the head.
The owner of Pamp’s Red Zone released this statement:
“We are all deeply saddened by the loss of Rocco. He was a part of our Red Zone family and loved by all. Our deepest sympathies go out to Rocco’s family.”
Lewinski is set to appear in West Seneca Town Court Tuesday night.