ALBUQUERQUE, N.M. – The Latest on a plea agreement in the shooting of a 4-year-old Albuquerque girl during a road-rage dispute in October 2015 (all times local):
The suspect charged in a shooting that killed a 4-year-old Albuquerque girl during what police say was a road-rage fight has been sentenced to 16 years in prison on a second-degree murder charge.
Tony Torrez apologized to the victim's family at his plea hearing Thursday, a day after he accepted a plea deal with prosecutors.
His jury trial had been scheduled to start Thursday before he agreed to the deal in the October 2015 shooting.
Alan and Veronica Garcia brought photographs of their daughter Lilly to court, with one large image of the victim smiling and wearing pink cowboy boots propped against a courtroom bench.
Through tears, Veronica Garcia recalled in court how she rushed to the hospital the day of the killing, and described the toll the shooting has taken on her family.
The suspect accused of fatally shooting a 4-year-old Albuquerque girl during a road rage dispute with the child's father is scheduled to appear in court Thursday, with his attorneys saying he'll enter a plea to a count of second-degree murder.
Tony Torrez's attorneys say they reached a deal with prosecutors that calls for him to enter an Alford plea and accept a 16-year prison term in the death of Lilly Garcia, who was riding in her father's pickup truck when she was shot. An Alford plea means Torrez does not admit guilt but acknowledges there is enough evidence to convict him.
Torrez had been charged with first-degree murder, which carries a life sentence. A jury trial in the high-profile case was scheduled to begin Thursday before attorneys announced they had met a Wednesday deadline for a plea agreement.