Driver In Road Rage Incident That Killed A Motorist Pleads No Contest To Manslaughter

The man who is accused of running a motorcyclist off the road in 2017 has pleaded no contest in a Torrance Superior Court on Tuesday.

The Daily Breeze reports that 27-year-old Oscar Villa of Hawthorne engaged in a road rage incident running 21-year-old Jaylen Ramone Bell-Maxwell of Los Angeles off the road on December 21st, 2017. 

According to court records, Villa had been driving in the vicinity of Western Avenue and Gardena Boulevard when he got into an altercation with Bell-Maxwell.  During the incident, Villa drove over Bell-Maxwell and his motorcycle. He then and attempted to leave the scene before crashing into a building. Bell-Maxwell died as a result of the injuries he sustained in the crash.

Prosecutors initially charged Villa with murder in the road rage incident; however, Villa took a plea deal of no contest to voluntary manslaughter and assault with a deadly weapon.  On Tuesday, September 1st, a Torrance Superior Court Judge sentenced Villa to six years in state prison effective immediately.

Surviving family members are unhappy with the sentence, saying that it’s far too lenient. Bell-Maxwell’s mother, Sherie Bell, told reporters that she believes that Villa’s defense attorney is closely connected to the Los Angeles County District Attorney’s Office. Bell makes these claims because she is close friends with one of the founders of Black Lives Matter in Los Angeles and that the organization has been outspoken in its criticism of District Attorney Jackie Lacey.

Both the District Attorney’s office and the defense attorney have denied Bell’s allegations.

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