Judge Will Have Last Word On Park Street Hit-And-Run Plea Bargain
Hartford Courant Editorial
February 25, 2010
Who can blame the family of Angel Arce Torres for wishing that the reckless driver who smashed into the elderly Hartford resident on Park Street almost two years ago, on May 30, 2008, had gone to trial?
The 78-year-old man, paralyzed from the neck down after being struck, lingered for nearly a year before he was removed from a ventilator and died.
Meanwhile the heedless and cowardly driver — one of two careering down Park Street that day — fled the scene. That driver, Luis Negron, denied his involvement when being questioned early in the investigation and again failed to accept responsibility when being questioned after Mr. Torres died on May 11 last year.
Mr. Negron's trial was to begin Monday. The victim's son, Angel Arce, was hoping for a conviction and long sentence. But before the trial was under way, Mr. Negron pleaded guilty to first-degree manslaughter and evading responsibility. As part of the plea bargain, prosecutors recommended that he go to prison for 10 to 12 years.
Mr. Arce feels the recommended sentence is too lenient and that conviction at trial would have yielded a longer term for the driver who ran a man down and ran away. He's probably right. A trial would have produced a more exact justice.
Mr. Negron is to be sentenced May 3. We hope the judge remembers what happened to Mr. Torres and his family and sentences accordingly.
Reprinted with permission of the Hartford Courant.
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