Teen dead after asthma attack following fight on Staten Island

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CeFaan Kim reporting live on Staten Island

A teen is dead after suffering an asthma attack while running away from the scene of a fight on Staten Island.

Dayshen McKenzie, 16, was at a prearranged fight between two boys at the Checkers restaurant on Forest Avenue May 27 at around 4:15 p.m.

He was in a crowd at the scene, but was not participating. When somebody thought they heard the word, "gun," everyone scattered, according to the New York City Police Department.

No one interviewed said they actually saw a gun.

McKenzie collapsed in the backyard of a Spartan Avenue home in Mariners Harbor. He was pronounced dead at Richmond University Medical Center about two hours later.

Detectives investigated the death, but did not find anything suspicious.

McKenzie has asthma and another medical condition that is triggered by asthma and causes a cardiac condition. McKenzie did not have his asthma inhaler with him, his mother said.

The medical examiner reviewed the case last weekend. "The cause and manner of death are pending further studies," a statement from the office said.

McKenzie was a student at Curtis High School.

In a statement, Staten Island District Attorney Michael E. McMahon said, "We offer our deepest condolences to the family and friends of Dayshen McKenzie during their time of grief. This office takes any allegations of a hate crime seriously. At this time, we have spoken with members of the NYPD who are investigating and we will continue to speak with them as this matter continues to be investigated."

New York Mayor Bill de Blasio warned against a "rush to judgement."

"I don't know enough and the police don't know enough yet. I want to be very clear about that. We cannot rush to judgement on this one, we need to know more," he said Friday on WNYC-AM.

The Rev. Al Sharpton released a statement saying the National Action Network would call on the federal government to investigate the incident as a possible hate crime.
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