Former bouncer pleads guilty in 2015 deadly Hickory assault

Former bouncer pleads guilty in 2015 deadly Hickory assault

CATAWBA COUNTY, NC (WBTV) - A man pleaded guilty Wednesday in a 2015 Hickory pool hall deadly assault.

Richard Charles Cunningham, 35, was a bouncer at Randolph Billiards when he got into a physical altercation with 32-year-old Matthew Lee Swanson on Dec.6, 2015, court documents say.

Officers were called to the pool hall to find Swanson unconscious on the floor of the back room. A witness said she saw Cunningham strike Swanson six or seven times.

Swanson went to Frye Regional Medical Center and later Wake Forest Baptist Medical Center in Winston-Salem where he died the next day.

Surveillance video showed Swanson and Cunningham in an altercation, "with Cunningham delivering punch-like motions to Swanson while the victim was on the floor," court documents state. Investigators were reportedly initially told that surveillance cameras were not operational at the time.

"The autopsy indicated that Swanson's cause of death was hypoxic ischemic brain injury due to concussive/post-traumatic apnea due to blunt force injury of the head and acute ethanol intoxication," documents state.

Cunningham was sentenced to between 38 and 58 months at the North Carolina Division of Adult Corrections.

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