Sherriff’s Deputy Dies During Fight at a New York Casino

  • A fight broke out when officers were escorting two people from the bar
  • Thomas Sanfratello died from a suspected heart attack during the confrontation
  • One of the suspects is now facing a first-degree manslaughter charge
Police tape
A sheriff’s deputy died from a suspected heart attack during a fight at a New York casino. [Image:]

A sheriff’s deputy died during a fight at a New York casino in the early hours of Sunday morning. 54-year-old Genesee County Sheriff’s Sergeant Thomas Sanfratello was working a special assignment detail at the Batavia Downs Gaming & Hotel when a scuffle broke out.

He was helping the property’s security staff escort the two individuals, Lyndsey Wilcox and Michael Elmore, out of the bar following a verbal confrontation when Wilcox began to resist. They managed to subdue Wilcox, but Elmore took the opportunity to attack Sanfratello and the other police officers who had arrived.

falling unconscious due to a suspected heart attack

Sanfratello tried to use his taser to try to get the situation under control before falling unconscious due to a suspected heart attack. Attempts to then resuscitate him were unsuccessful. He served 32 years in the Sheriff’s Office and was a two-time Officer of the Year.

The incident led to the evacuation and temporary closure of the casino. Elmore, who has a lengthy criminal record, is now facing charges of first-degree manslaughter, the aggravated assault of a police officer, and second-degree burglary. Wilcox is looking at attempted assault and second-degree burglary charges.

They are due to appear in the Town of Batavia Court on Tuesday. The burglary charges relate to the pair initially getting kicked out of the property before returning with “the intent to commit a crime.”

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