Two charged with killing father who stepped in to protect daughter in bar fight


Two men have been charged with the murder of a father who stepped in to stop his daughter being assaulted as they celebrated his birthday at a bar in Maplewood last November.

Ronald D. Smaller and Brandon J. Smith, both aged 24 and both of St. Paul, were charged in Ramsey County District Court Friday, each on two counts of second-degree murder without intent.

Smith is currently in jail, while a warrant has been issued for Smaller's arrest, according to a release from the Ramsey County Attorney Office.

It follows the death of Eduardo Alberto Figueroa last November, with the father-of-three and metro business owner who stepped in to break up a fight after three people started assaulting his 18-year-old daughter at Freddy's Tiki Hut.

The 40-year-old from St. Paul was then beaten, and later died at his home.

According to the charges, Figueroa and the Tiki Hut owner tried to escort Smaller, Smith and another woman out of the bar because Smaller was yelling into his phone and was being asked by the performing band to keep it down.

They argued but the trio left, only for Smaller and the woman to return and grab Figueroa's daughter's hair, at which point Figueroa intervened.

He was punched several times in the head by Smith and knocked to the ground, the document says, at which point Smaller began kicking him in the head.

Figueroa was left unconscious, but after regaining it he said he didn't need a medic and went home. Later that night, he was found unresponsive by his family.

An autopsy found that Figueroa had been suffering with heart disease, and the assault had brought on a fatal cardiac arrhythmia.

Next Up

Screen Shot 2021-09-16 at 6.56.30 PM

Severe thunderstorm watch issued for central MN, part of Twin Cities

A line of storms is making its way across the state.

Flickr - Enbridge Line 3 Palisade - Lorie Shaull

DNR orders Enbridge to pay $3.32M over Line 3 environmental violations

The pipeline company breached a groundwater aquifer, causing water to flow uncontrolled into a trench.

Eric Kendricks

Eric Kendricks misses practice, lands on injury report

The star linebacker headlines a lengthy list ahead of Week 2.

WIkimedia commons covid vaccine moderna

3 Twin Cities counties reach 16+ vaccination rate of 80%

More than 8 in 10 residents of that age group have gotten at least one dose.

Flickr - Burlington store exterior -

New Burlington location opens in Minneapolis Friday

To celebrate, the company is donating $50K to a neighborhood group and nearby school.

Top Ten Liquors Minnetonka rendering

Top Ten Liquors plans another Twin Cities location

The high-end wine bar and grocery space would take over a former Champps.

London Michael Bean go fund me

Teen charged with fatal shooting of 12-year-old London Bean

A warrant has been issued for the 18-year-old's arrest.

Minnesota Wild

Wild announce national TV broadcast schedule

The Wild will have 13 games nationally televised this season

suni lee

St. Paul's Suni Lee named to Time's list of 100 Most Influential People

Lee won three medals at the Tokyo Olympics, including an all-around gold.

Dunn County WI homicide suspect

1 arrested in quadruple killing, with 'armed and dangerous' suspect at large

The four victims were found in an abandoned SUV in rural Wisconsin.

Screen Shot 2020-06-15 at 7.11.05 AM

Rape, incest suspect from Indiana is caught in St. Cloud

The 40-year-old was found in an apartment building.

Rep Tim Miller mn leg

MN rep calls upholding of TX abortion law 'great news for America'

Rep. Tim Miller also outlined a new abortion-related bill he plans to introduce.