Prosecutor Puts Unique Plea Deal Together For Man Who Killed Her Son

Faye McCormack Fights Drunk Drivers, But Tries To Help One

NEW YORK (CBSNewYork) — The son of a cop who admitted to killing an aspiring lawyer in a drunk-driving crash won’t spend a day in prison. That’s part of a plea deal agreed to by the victim’s mother — a woman who has spent her life targeting drunk drivers.

It’s the irony of her life — a grieving Faye McCormack spent 18 years as a prosecutor making it her mission to put DUI drivers behind bars. On Thursday she was the reason the young man responsible for her son Malcolm’s death will walk free.

“I worked in an office of prosecutors. Everybody else thinks this is a dumb thing to do,” McCormack told CBS 2’s Emily Smith.

However, outside of the courtroom McCormack said ex-husband, Malcolm’s father, convinced her that a prison sentence wouldn’t do any justice here.

“An eye for an eye is not a good thing. You get to see the third side of the coin,” Fred McCormack said.

When asked if she still feels she did the right thing, Faye McCormack said, “I will see. I am still a prosecutor at heart so I will see what happens. I’m still conflicted about what happened today.”

Michael Ortiz, 22, won’t spend a day in prison for the felony — something unprecedented in this jurisdiction.

In court, Ortiz withdrew his not guilty plea admitting he’s responsible for drinking and driving two and a half years ago, killing 28-year-old Malcolm McCormack. It happened in East New York at 11 p.m. Malcolm McCormack, an aspiring lawyer, had just finished playing the violin and took a walk for some food.

Ortiz, the son of a cop, immediately left court in a hurry Thursday with nothing to say. Ortiz agreed to a conditional plea, which means if he doesn’t meet the conditions he could be put in jail. He will begin a mandatory community service sentence which includes 100 visits to high school students about the perils of drinking and driving.

“It is my wish Mr. Ortiz will represent Malcolm’s memory by showing others it is a very fatal, bad thing to drink and drive, even if you only had two drinks,” Faye McCormack said.

If the case went to trial and Ortiz was convicted he would have spent up to seven years in prison.

Do you think the McCormacks did the right thing? Please offer your thoughts in the comments section below.

  • John Mqyne

    I can’t think of a better way to honor his memory.

    May he Rest in Peace.

  • John Mayne

    Think of it this way.. If he stops one or two kids from doing the same thing he did and saves a life, isn’t that a good thing? Malcolm is gone, and cannot be brought back.

    If Ortiz can put his life to good use, Isn’t that better than your tax dollars and mine, paying his room and board in prison – where let’s face it he’s not going to learn to become a productive member of society?

    Remember that this is what his Father, sister and Mother (reluctantly) want done.

  • vy

    Going to a place by car to drick, knowing you will have to drive home again after drinking, is a premeditated decision to drive under the influence, or to drive drunk. Anything that happens after that is NOT an accident.
    It was to be expected by a person who willfully decided to drive under the influence on the way home, even BEFORE driving to the drinking location.

  • Yaicha

    Yes, what she did was very brave and will make a difference for the better in the long run. First of all, this young man did not intentionally kill her son. It was an accident. Going to prison would not help him become a better person. Going to classrooms and talking to others about what happened will help those kids to make a better choice about drinking and driving, and it will help him also. We need to more focused on helping people turn their lives around. Revenge only fills our hearts with hate, sickens our souls, and makes the people we take revenge on worse.

  • John Dieffenbach

    i think if it wasn’t a cops son he would be doing time ( bs justice) if it were you or me plain people you bet we would be doing hard time chalk up another one for american justice thanks

  • George

    It would be hard for me to do something that the McCormacks did. However, you cannot second guess someone’s decision expecially when it involves a tragedy. They had their reasons and who knows, if this individual speaks to 15,000 children and uses his victims name each time, then his victim may be remembered by as many people instead of just the perb. Putting the man in jail does not bring back their child but being remembered might bring more satisfaction. I would set in on a few if not many of his talks which I hope those 100 visits mean. My heartfelt condolence to the the parents and loved one’s of Malcolm McCormack.

    • George

      God rest his soul.

  • sharon wolff

    I am at a loss for words here. I feel a jail term is in order given the crime that was committed. I am trying like heck to understand the McCormacks reasoning, but just can’t get my heart and head to understand it. This may send a wrong message to other folks who committ this type of crime!

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