Man accused of killing toddler in 2014 pleads guilty to manslaughter
A second-degree murder charge was dismissed in a plea agreement
PALMER, Alaska (KTUU) - In a Palmer courtroom Monday morning, 49-year-old Jyzyk Sharpe pleaded guilty to manslaughter as part of a plea agreement that was reached just as his trial was about to get underway. Sharpe was originally charged with second-degree murder and manslaughter for the 2014 death of his girlfriend’s 1-year-old son.
According to court documents, Wasilla police responded to a home on the 200 block of East Quincy Circle in March of 2014 where they found a man performing CPR on the child. Medics transported the child to Mat-Su Regional Medical Center where he was pronounced dead. Sharpe told investigators that the infant had fallen as he tried to get in the shower with his twin sisters, but the medical examiner said the injuries were consistent with blunt force trauma.
Sharpe’s trial was set to get underway last week after a jury had been selected when the state’s prosecution team offered him a plea deal that would dismiss the second-degree murder charge in exchange for a guilty plea to manslaughter. If tried and convicted on his original charges, Sharpe would be facing a minimum 20-year sentence, but under the new plea agreement he would serve 20 years total; 10 years suspended with 10 served.
“With the type of charge that he has pled to, he is eligible for discretionary parole and mandatory parole, which also makes a big difference in terms of the time that he would actually have to serve assuming he does well and there are no violations,” Sharpe’s defense attorney Windy Hannaman said. “He can get out in as early as two years and six months.”
After Monday’s hearing, Sharpe was remanded into custody for the first time since his initial arrest in 2014. Superior Court Judge Gregory Miller will decide whether to accept or reject the plea agreement at Sharpe’s sentencing hearing, scheduled for Jan. 27 of next year.
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