NEW HAVEN, CT (The New Haven Register) – One year after the car he was driving struck and killed a motorcyclist, a city man has been sentenced to serve four years in prison.
Luis Lala, 28, of Ellsworth Avenue, had pleaded guilty to evading responsibility involving the death of a person: Bobby Sunshine Pinkston, 37, of West Haven.
After Lala entered into the plea agreement, prosecutors dropped the other charges of negligent homicide with a motor vehicle, operating a motor vehicle without a license, operating under the influence of alcohol or drugs and making an improper turn.
Police said Lala’s vehicle collided with Pinkston and his motorcycle at the corner of Whalley and Ellsworth avenues at about 5:30 a.m. on June 29, 2018. Pinkston was taken to Yale New Haven Hospital, where he died.
Dash camera footage from a passing motorist’s vehicle showed the motorcycle traveling east on Whalley Avenue and the Nissan Maxima turning left onto Whalley from Ellsworth Avenue, according to police.
“The Nissan operator doesn’t stop and drives off after the crash,” police said in their statement. “He stops on Argonne Street, where he’s confronted by a man who indicates he’s aware of the driver’s involvement in the crash. When the witness pulls out his phone to call police, the driver takes off running into a nearby apartment building.”
Two men on the porch of the apartment building told police they had seen the man get out of the Nissan and run inside, according to the police statement. One of the men on the porch said he asked the man if he was OK and offered to call 911 for him. The man reportedly replied: “I’m OK, I need to call my wife. I hit a bike, I hit a bike.”
Moments later, police Officer John Brangi stopped Lala after witnesses pointed him out. An angry crowd gathered and Lala was taken into custody, police said.
Attorney Glenn Conway, who appeared alongside Lala at the sentencing hearing, said later: “It’s a sad day for both families. This was the subject of many pre-trial appearances. Ultimately, the disposition that was worked out was fair and reasonable, under the circumstances.”
Superior Court Judge Philip Scarpellino imposed a sentence of 10 years, to be suspended after four years, with another four years of probation.
The prosecutor, Assistant State’s Attorney Joseph LaMotta, could not be reached for comment.
*Of course, The New Haven Register failed to disclose the fact that this killer, Luis Lala, is an illegal alien!