The devastated sister of a young dad who died in a drunken fight is urging others to walk away from brawls – after charges against his alleged attacker were dropped.
Nigel Evans, aged 24, from Barnsley, died last July after he got into a fight with Magomeds Hizrijevs.
They had been drinking with Mr Evans’ older brother in a pub off Doncaster Road, near Barnsley town centre, when the fight broke out.
Mr Evans was found unconscious on Sunderland Terrace at 5.50pm on Friday, July 19.
Latvian-born Mr Hizrijevs, 20, of Doncaster Road, Barnsley, a former international kickboxer, was arrested and charged with manslaughter.
But the charges have been dropped after the CPS said there was no realistic chance of securing a conviction.
Nigel’s sister Sarah Evans, 26, said: “When I heard the charges had been dropped I was physically sick.”
Nigel, a factory order picker, struck his head on the ground after being punched.
He was rushed to Barnsley Hospital where he was put into an induced coma but he failed to recover and two days later his family had to make the decision to turn off his life support machine.
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Sarah added: “My whole life has changed. I’ve not got a brother any more and I miss him so much.
“His kids are only one and two and will have to grow up without a dad.
“I just want to say to other people just be careful and don’t get into drunken fights. “It could cost you your life or you could end up in prison.
“It takes a bigger man to walk away.”
Nigel left a son, two, daughter, one, and partner Rebecca.
A police spokeswoman said they had conducted ‘a thorough investigation’ and added: “However, following further consultation with counsel and the Crown Prosecution Service, it was determined that there was not a realistic prospect of securing a conviction and as such, the case was withdrawn.”
Michael Quinn, senior district crown prosecutor, CPS Yorkshire and Humberside, said: “Mr Evans died from two blows to the face from the defendant, Magomeds Hizrijevs.
“When interviewed by police Mr Hizrijevs claimed he was acting in self-defence.
“The standard of proof in a criminal case means a jury cannot convict unless they are sure the defendant is guilty.
“Having considered the defence raised and all the accounts given by witnesses, we concluded a jury would not be sure whether or not Magomeds Hizrijevs was acting in self-defence.
“This meant there was no realistic prospect of conviction so the case could not continue.
“We have explained this decision fully to Mr Evans’ family and his partner.”