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Archive for Tuesday, June 17, 2014

Defense seeks sentence of probation in 2012 beer bottle death

June 17, 2014

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A Mission man has filed a motion for probation after being convicted two weeks ago of killing another man with a beer bottle at a Lawrence party in 2012.

An attorney for Justin P. Gonzalez, 23, filed the motion Tuesday in Douglas County District Court, and a sentencing hearing was set for Aug. 19. An earlier date was discussed, but defense attorney Sarah Swain asked the judge to wait until after Aug. 15, which she said is the last day of Gonzalez’s internship at an accounting firm.

Gonzalez was found guilty of involuntary manslaughter on June 5 in the death of Nicholas J. Sardina, 27, of Lawrence, after Gonzalez’s first trial in December 2013 ended in a hung jury. Sardina died from his injuries after Gonzalez hit him over the head with a beer bottle during a fight at a party in the early-morning hours of Feb. 25, 2012.

Gonzalez remains free on bond. His attorney said Gonzalez, because of his lack of a criminal history, faced a sentence of probation to 34 months in prison.

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