X-wake forest coach escapes from jail after fatal punch of NYC tourist

The former Wake Forest basketball coach, whose knockout punch resulted in the death of a Florida tourist in Queens two years ago, served his sentence on Thursday.

Jamil Jones, 37, will serve three years of probation, 1,500 hours of community service and will pay a $ 1,000 fine on the death of Sander Szabo, a Boca Raton resident in August 2018.

Jones was jailed for a year after being convicted in February of a third-degree assault.

Szabo was then smacked in the head by Danny Manning’s assistant in the ACC basketball program, Jones for a drunk blast on his car in Long Island City.

Szabo – an online-marketing exec who attended his step-sister’s wedding earlier in the day – was searching for his ride-share vehicle when he knocked on Jones’ window, his family has said.

The former college hoops coach followed Szabo and punched him in the face once.

Sajabo, 35, dropped his head on the pavement, causing skull fractures and other brain injuries. He died in hospital three days later.

Queens District Attorney Melinda Katz said in a statement, “It was a tragic incident that ended a person’s life and devastated his family, a violent run-off that never took place.”

“Violence is never the answer to a settlement of a dispute.”

Jones sentenced Judge Queens Waters of Queens Criminal Court, circling his relatives via Skype video link. He apologized to Szabo’s family.

Donna Kent, mother of Sander Szabo.
Donna Kent, mother of Sander Szabo.Brigitte Stelzer

“We are very sorry for the Szabo family and are happy with the judge’s sentence,” said Eric Renfro, one of their defense lawyers. “[Jones is] A good person and we are sure that he will continue to do well in his life. “

The victim’s mother, Donna Kent, and other family members also attended the hearing via video.

She decided the prosecutors’ decision to accuse Jones with only third-degree assault, and the resulting sentence, “inadequate and inappropriate for the crime of killing a person.”

“Judge Waters had an opportunity to send a powerful message to society – but a weak-willed message that repentance alone is enough to prevent justice,” Kent said in a statement.

She said the family is exploring options in civil courts “to correct the wrong.”

“[We] Believe it will do what the criminal court was too afraid to do: Jamil C. to kill our beloved Sandor. Punish Jones. “