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Times Square hotel cab dispatcher punched to death after skipping over driver, cops say

Riu Hotel on W. 47th St. (Google)
Riu Hotel on W. 47th St. (Google)

The man who died after he was sucker punched at a Times Square hotel was working as a cab dispatcher who skipped over an irate driver, cops said Tuesday.

Efrain Patino Guerra, 53, was working at the the Riu Hotel on W. 47th St. near Seventh Ave. around 1:15 p.m. June 17, assigning fares to cabs as guests left the hotel, NYPD Chief of Detectives Joseph Kenny said at a news conference.

“Whatever happens, he must skip a driver,” Kenny said, and that aggravated driver Jaime Rosario, who “aggressively” confronted Guerra.

Surveillance footage reviewed by police shows the “much bigger” Rosario, 54, punch Guerra “square in the face,” the chief said.

“You see from the video, he’s clearly knocked unconscious,” Kenny said. “[He] falls back and hits his head on the concrete.”

Guerra fell into a coma and clung to life at Bellevue Hospital for 10 days, police said.

At one point, the victim went into cardiac arrest and was dead for seven minutes before medical staff managed to revive him.

But it wasn’t enough.

Three days before Guerra’s June 27 death, police arrested Rosario, of Yonkers, and charged him with assault.

He was released following an arraignment in Manhattan Criminal Court and is due back before a judge on July 18.

Charges against him will likely be upgraded in light of Guerra’s death.

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