Man kills friend with single sucker punch to the head at birthday party

By: Tony Thomas, WSBTV.com

Updated:

GWINNETT COUNTY, Ga - A Georgia man is dead after police say someone threw one punch at a birthday party.

It happened Saturday night at a home in Gwinnett County where a large group of people had gathered for the party. 

>> Read more trending news

A birthday banner was still up at a tent in the yard when WSB-TV talked to the widow of Tomas Rodriguez Tuesday. He was a father of three. 

“It's so hard, it's so hard for me but I'm so sad for my little girl,” said Ana Arriaga. 

The family said Rodriguez joined about 70 other people for the birthday party. The adults stayed around drinking afterwards when, police said, Rodriguez began making derogatory remarks and physical contact with another man, Adrian Herrera.

Just after 3 a.m., police said, Herrera threw one punch. It landed on the side of Rodriguez’s head and neck.

He fell and later died.

Police charged Herrera with voluntary manslaughter, saying it would normally be murder, but Herrera acted solely as a result of a sudden, violent and irresistible passion.

In court Tuesday, Herrera asked for bond. 

“Is it possible you can give me a bond soon to provide for my family as soon as possible?” Herrera asked the judge.

The judge denied his request and ordered him to be held without bond.

“Adrian broke a lot of lives, a lot of hearts,” Arriaga said.

Arriaga admits her husband had been drinking a lot, but said when he drank he was a baby and couldn’t have fought anyone. 

Herrera will be back in court next week. 

Tomas Rodriguez,pictured here, was killed by a single sucker punch to the head at a birthday party in metro Atlanta Saturday night. One person is in custody.
WSBTV/Ana Arriaga

Next Up: