NEW YORK (CBSNewYork) — A teenager accused of striking and killing a 4-year-old with a sport-utility vehicle accepted a plea deal Thursday.
Franklin Reyes Jr., 18, pleaded guilty Thursday afternoon to manslaughter for the June 2013 death of Ariel Russo as well as to charges of assaulting a police officer and running from the cops. He faces a sentence of three to nine years in prison.
Reyes did not plead guilty to charges following his arrest with his father for looting an apartment; that case will go to trial.
“His reckless actions killed my daughter, maimed my mother and have shattered our lives. We’re never going to be the same again,” Ariel’s mother, Sofia Russo, said.
Sofia Russo told Cornell that when Reyes comes up for parole, she will be there in the courtroom to keep him in prison.
But as CBS2’s Alice Gainer reported, getting Reyes’ plea wasn’t easy– it took three court appearances in the last 24 hours.
Reyes first rejected the plea deal in court Wednesday.
The judge appeared stunned when Reyes turned down the deal. He informed him there would be no more offers and then gave him until Thursday morning to reconsider.