Boy, 16, dies after Fairhill playground fight

A playground spat between two boys turned deadly in Fairhill earlier today, police said.

Relatives of both boys said Hector Soto, 16, slugged Eric Dixon, 16, after the two had apparently argued over trivial teenage nonsense at Fairhill Square park, on Lehigh Avenue near 4th Street, shortly after 3:35 p.m.

Dixon fell to the ground unconscious. He was taken by medics to Temple University Hospital, where he died at 4:18 p.m., police said. The teen suffered head trauma, although the exact cause of death won't be known until after an autopsy is performed this weekend, a homicide detective said.

A woman at the park who identified herself as Soto's sister said her brother "was trying to show off in front of a girl, and it got out of hand. He never would have tried to hurt someone like this."

"He was scared when he saw the ambulance. He knew he was in trouble, so he stayed" at the scene, his sister added.

Shortly after 6 p.m., Soto's sobbing relatives met Dixon's mother, Miranda Dixon, and the boy's grandfather, Yusef Hameed, at the edge of the park, not far from where the fatal fight occurred. "Everybody lost here today," Hameed said. "It was another senseless killing."

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