A Hudson Valley man is dead days after police say he was attacked at the gas pump.

On Tuesday, police received a report of a man bleeding in the parking lot of a gas station in Middletown. After arriving on the scene, authorities say they discovered a 31-year-old man knocked out on the ground. Witnesses said that the unconscious man was attacked by another person who fled the gas station in a car.

The attack came just days after another incident at a gas station in Wappingers Falls where a man pulled a knife on another customer who jumped in front of him in line. It's unclear if the two men in the Middletown incident knew each other or what the nature of the altercation was that ended with one of them being knocked to the ground.

The gas station is located at 139 Wickham Avenue. Formerly a Citgo station, the BP is located near the busy intersection of Wickham (Route 211) and Cottage Street.


The victim, who was identified as Daniel Mesa-Rios, was being prepared for transport by Mobile Life Support Services to Garnet Health Medical Center when the alleged assailant returned to the gas station and approached officers. After speaking with authorities, Jose Vazquez-Rivera was identified as the man who assaulted Mesa-Rios and was taken into custody.

Vazquez-Rivera was charged with Assault in the Second Degree and released on bail. But now, those charges have been elevated.

Hand holding gasoline nozzle for car refueling at gas station

On Saturday, Mesa-Rios was taken off of life support and pronounced dead. Because the victim has passed away due to injuries sustained from the alleged assault, Vazquez-Rivera was placed under arrest again. He's now been charged with the more serious crime of Manslaughter in the Second Degree. Mesa-Rios was arraigned in Goshen and placed in custody at Orange County Jail.

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