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LI Man Gets Jail Time For Drag Racing Crash That Left NYPD Officer Dead

Jonathan Lopez hugs a family member before his sentencing in Mineola, March 21, 2014. (credit: Sophia Hall/WCBS 880)

Jonathan Lopez hugs a family member before his sentencing in Mineola, March 21, 2014. (credit: Sophia Hall/WCBS 880)

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MINEOLA, N.Y. (CBSNewYork) – A Long Island man is sentenced to 10 months in jail for a drag racing crash that killed an off-duty police officer and injured an FBI agent.

As WCBS 880’s Sophia Hall reported, Jonathan Lopez, 22, did not speak as the judge handed down the sentence.

“You are a person who made a bad and tragic mistake and for that, I am sentencing you to ten months behind bars,” said the judge.

Lopez was acquitted at trial of manslaughter but found guilty of assault and reckless endangerment after prosecutors said he was drag racing on the Southern State Parkway in September 2011 with an off-duty NYPD officer.

Officer Kevin Jessup, 25, of Massapequa died at the scene of the three-car crash. An FBI agent on her was to work was injured.

Defense attorney Bruce Barket said he was disappointed with the sentence.

“He’s a first time offender, convicted of a misdemeanor. Probation is almost required in this case,” he told Hall. “The court had indicated that if he pled guilty to manslaughter, she would’ve given him a sentence of six months and five years’ probation. He was acquitted of the manslaughter. For the judge to have given 10 months is extremely disappointing.”

Barket added his client is remorseful for what happened, but noted Lopez did not cause the officer’s death.

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