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José Rafael Pisano, with his wife, Romina. SUR
Widow of doorman who died after a brawl in Mijas restaurant tells how he was fearful just hours before his death

Widow of doorman who died after a brawl in Mijas restaurant tells how he was fearful just hours before his death

Crime ·

Romina said that her husband José Rafael Pisani Pardo messaged her on the fatal night to say he was afraid because there were "a lot of drunk people"

Juan Cano

Malaga

Wednesday, 19 April 2023

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The doorman who died after an assault at former Towie star Elliot Wright's restaurant Olivia's La Cala, in Mijas, messaged his wife before the fatal incident to say he was afraid because there were "a lot of drunk people".

Romina replied to her husband José Rafael Pisani Pardo that he should be careful and he reassured her that he had only a short time to do before going home. That was just after midnight on Saturday 15 April. Half an hour later, at 0.30am, José Rafael Pisani would be knocked out by a man he was trying to immobilise to prevent a fight in the restaurant.

"He told me he would be back here soon. I wanted him to come as soon as possible. But he never came back," Romina said.

The security cameras captured him trying to hold down an even bigger and burlier man than he was. Pisani was a bodybuilder, like Romina, and had a very muscular body, sculpted by hours and hours in the gym. He had been working nights as a doorman for some time and didn't lack experience. Despite this, he was unable to restrain a troublesome client, who, as soon as he got free of him, punched him in the chin, knocking him to the ground. Hours later he died at Malaga's Regional hospital.

Romina, 32, described José as a "very quiet" man, who stayed out of trouble and led a healthy life. "He would go from home to work or to the gym and back. We liked to go out to dinner and travel, but nothing more. I always told him that you had to enjoy life and make the most of every moment together. We hadn't been lucky in love before, so we gave it up for each other. And for someone to suddenly come along and kill him...".

José Rafael Pisani, 55, was a Spaniard of Venezuelan origin. He and his wife, an Italian born in Chile, both trained at the Alhamar gym, now Oxygen, in Mijas Costa.

The couple, who married five months ago, had planned to become parents. And today, Wednesday 19 April, Romina was going to undergo artificial insemination but that is no longer possible.

Heartbroken Romina said she never liked her husband working at night. She wanted him to use his law degree.

"I wanted him to try, or at least to stop working as a doorman. He had promised me that this was the last summer he would do it and that in October he would quit. And look..."

The alleged attacker, a 32-year-old British man, has been arrested by the Guardia Civil.

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