An East Naples man has been sentenced to 15 years in prison after pleading no contest to charges related to a hit-and-run death during a botched drug deal in 2009.
Jack Edward Dyson, 21, took the plea agreement Monday on charges of manslaughter and failing to remain at a crash involving death, avoiding a maximum sentence of 45 years in prison. He also received 12 years probation as part of the agreement. Prosecutors dropped a robbery with a weapon charge against Dyson.
Collier County sheriff's deputies said Dyson ran down Kyle Armantrout, 21, in an Enterprise Avenue parking lot after stealing $1,200 worth of marijuana during a drug deal gone bad. Deputies said Dyson hit Armantrout with a Honda Accord, causing the 21-year-old to fall to the ground, and then ran him over.
Reached by phone Wednesday, a woman who identified herself as the wife of Armantrout's father said the family had no comment about the plea.
Dyson's lawyer, Donald Day, said his client didn't plan to run over Armantrout, but potentially harsh penalties for leaving the scene of a crime led to the plea agreement. Dyson has been in jail on $500,000 bond since Armantrout's August 2009 death.
"It's not like this was intended to happen," Day said of Armantrout's death. "It was an unintended consequence from a drug deal."
Deputies said two others were in the vehicle with Dyson — Alejandro Perez, now 18, of East Naples, and Javier Zuniga, now 20.
Perez reached a plea agreement in February that required him to testify against Dyson in exchange for a sentence of nine years in prison. Zuniga hasn't been located by deputies, who believe he likely fled the country. A warrant remains out for his arrest.
Day said Dyson is "a mess" as he heads to prison. Dyson hasn't spoken with Armantrout's relatives, and the plea agreement includes a provision barring contact with family.
"He's devastated," Day said of his client. "This is a young kid. He looks five years younger than he actually is. Any time you take a kid that young and send him to Florida State Prison, it's nothing good."