Patriots fan was punched in head before he died at stadium, witness says

A New England Patriots fan who died at a home game Sunday was punched in the head twice before the medical emergency, a witness said Tuesday.

Massachusetts State Police have said that Dale Mooney “suffered an apparent medical event” during the fourth quarter of Sunday’s game against the Miami Dolphins at Gillette Stadium in Foxborough, Mass.

“A fan in a Dolphins jersey reached over and just punched the victim twice in the face,” witness Joe Kilmartin said.

Authorities had not released a cause or manner of death by Tuesday night. The Norfolk District Attorney’s Office said the matter remains under active investigation.

A spokesperson for the district attorney’s office said Tuesday night there have been no arrests.

Mooney, 53, of Newmarket, New Hampshire, was a lifelong Patriots fan and a season ticket holder for 30 years, according to the district attorney's office and a statement from Gillette Stadium.

Dale Mooney. (WBTS)

“We continue to work with local authorities to assist them with their ongoing investigation,” stadium officials said. “We extend our sincerest sympathies and heartfelt condolences to Dale’s family and to all those who are mourning his loss.”

An autopsy would be conducted by the Office of the Chief Medical Examiner, Massachusetts State Police said.

An NFL spokesman said the organization sends its deepest condolences to the friends and family of Mooney.

"Our top priority is the safety of the more than one million fans who attend games each week. We deplore the activities of a handful of fans who interfere with the enjoyment of others," the spokesman said in a statement.

The Patriots and Dolphins are in the same division, the AFC East, and are rivals. The Dolphins won Sunday's game.

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