A Sunnyside man was sentenced for punching a man outside of a neighborhood bar, which ultimately led to the man’s death, prosecutors announced Thursday.
Steven O’Brien, 26, pleaded guilty to third-degree assault in November 2019. He was sentenced to serve six months in prison.
“This was a senseless confrontation outside a bar that ended tragically,” said Queens District Attorney Melinda Katz. “The victim’s death falls into a category of cases that has become known as a ‘one punch homicide’ – where a single blow results in death and the only intent that can be proved is to cause physical injury. Under the cases governing our prosecutions in these circumstances the highest charge the facts would support was assault in the third degree.”
According to charges, shortly after 3:25 a.m. on Nov. 22, 2018, O’Brien was outside of a bar on Queens Boulevard in Sunnyside when he got into an dispute with 21-year-old Daniel “ Danny” McGee, a native of Ireland and Gaelic football player. O’Brien then punched McGee once in the side of his face.
McGee fell and hit his head on the ground. McGee was taken to a local hospital, where he ultimately died as a result of blunt force trauma.
“The family of the victim were told of the limitations of this case and understood and were supportive of this outcome,” said DA Katz. “We, of course, would like to convey our heartfelt sympathies to the family of the victim.”