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Today Prosecutor Kym L. Worthy has amended charges for Bassel Abdul-Amir Saad, 36 (DOB: 2/28/78) of Dearborn, in connection with the death of 44-year-old soccer referee John Bieniewicz of Westland. On June 29, 2014 at approximately 11:59 a.m. at Mies Park, located at 32305 West Chicago in Livonia, Saad was participating in an adult soccer game when the referee determined he would automatically eject Saad from the game. It is alleged that Saad became upset and punched the referee in the head. Mr. Bieniewicz was immediately transported to a local hospital for treatment, however died as a result of his injuries.

Saad was originally charged with Assault with Intent to Do Great Bodily Harm and was arraigned on June 30, 2014 in 16th District Court in Livonia. Since the death of the victim, Saad is being held on a one million dollar cash/surety bond. As a result of the death of Mr. Bieniewicz, the Assault with Intent to Do Great Bodily Harm charge will be dismissed. Today Saad's charges have been amended to Second Degree Murder.

"The entire soccer world mourns with the family upon the death of John Bieniewicz. This is especially tragic because it happened as the World Cup dominates our television screens," said Prosecutor Worthy. "The alleged actions of this defendant cannot be tolerated and there must be action taken in our legislature to make sure that there are stronger penalties when a Referee is the victim during organized sport."

Saad is expected to be arraigned on the amended charges on Thursday, July 10, 2014 at 9:00 a.m. before Judge Kathleen McCann in the 16th District Court in Livonia. The preliminary examination will be adjourned and a new date will be set by the court at the arraignment.

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