KEY POINTS

  • The Clark County coroner had ruled the 20-year-old student’s death a homicide
  • Valencia collapsed and was hospitalized after the match
  • The Nevada boxing regulatory board said the event was not licensed

The death of a University of Nevada Las Vegas student after a fraternity charity boxing match was “not criminal,” the Las Vegas Metropolitan Police Department has said, despite the coroner ruling the student’s death as a homicide.

The Clark County Office of Coroner/Medical Examiner previously ruled the death of 20-year-old Nathan Tyler Valencia a homicide, with the cause of death being due to blunt force head trauma.

In a statement cited by CNN, police said the “definition of homicide is an act of a human killing another person,” however, “the circumstances surrounding his death are not criminal and no charges will be filed.” Police explained that “although Mr. Valencia’s death is tragic,” detectives “look at the facts surrounding the specific event that caused the death of the person and determine if there is any criminality” in a homicide case.

Nathan, who was a member of UNLV’s Sigma Alpha Epsilon, was a participant in “Fight Night” on Nov. 19, organized by fraternity Kappa Sigma, according to family attorney Nick Lasso.

Speaking with CNN’s Brianna Keilar on Monday, Nathan’s mother, Cynthia Valencia, said her son was not a boxer, which made her worry when the student first told her about the event. “But he kept telling us ‘no, this is for people who didn’t have prior boxing experience,’” Cynthia said.

Lasso also noted that while the event has been held at the UNLV for years, it “just appears that there were safety failures, every single step of this process,” claiming that there were no paramedics or professional referees during the event.

Cynthia said her son waited for paramedics “for about 15 minutes” as he lay on the floor after collapsing. Nathan passed away on Nov. 23, after being hospitalized following the match, four days before his 21st birthday.

Following confirmation of Nathan’s death, UNLV President Keith Whitfield said in a statement that the young man collapsed “soon after his fight” at the “off-campus event intended to raise money.” Whitfield added that the university “is committing all available resources to review the incident and determine how off-campus events like these can be as safe as possible.”

The Valencia family’s legal counsel also said college students “should not be placed in a situation where they are pitted against each other for combat.”

The Nevada Athletic Commission’s chairman Stephen Cloobeck said the agency will investigate Nathan’s death as the charity boxing competition was not licensed by the regulatory board, Associated Press reported. The fundraising event was meant to benefit Center Ring Boxing, a local gym that provides training for troubled young people.

Nathan was given an honor walk at the Sunrise Hospital as his organ donations will help save eight lives.

Neuroboxing Parkinson’s disease patients in California are fighting to stay alive, literally, through the Neuroboxing program, which is designed to curtail the progression of the debilitating disease. In this photo, a worker shapes and tests boxing gloves at Reyes Industries in Mexico City, on July 6, 2017. Photo: Getty Images/ BERNARDO MONTOYA