Teen Sentenced in Fatal Crash Following “Drug Deal Gone Wrong”
SIOUX FALLS, S.D. – Alex Lingor, 17, was sentenced Tuesday for his role in a fatal car crash early last year.
Lingor plead guilty earlier this year to second degree manslaughter, aggravated assault, and distributing marijuana to a minor. His case was also transferred to adult court.
The charges stem from an accident in February 2017.
Police say Lingor was selling marijuana to another group of teens, but the buyers took off with the drugs, without paying.
Lingor chased after that car in a pursuit that got up to 90 miles per hour on Western Avenue.
The two cars collided near 26th Street. The car Lingor was chasing went into a tree, killing Kareem Cisse, 15, who was a passenger.
In court, Lingor told Cisse’s family he was sorry for what happened telling them thinks about it every day.
“I took a young man’s life, he had so much life ahead of him,” Lingor said. “It’s all on me now… I am sorry.”
The judge sentenced Lingor to 27 years, the max sentence for each charge.
However, all of those years are suspended.
Lingor will spend 65 days behind bars, with 15 years of probation.
Judge Bradley Zell explained the reason for the short sentence.
He says he believes Lingor has a shot at rehabilitation to become a productive member of society. He says Lingor also needs therapy for drug addiction.
Judge Zell says if Alex messes up any time in the next 15 years he’ll serve his full 27 year sentence in the state penitentiary.
“You have 30 years hanging over your head,” Judge Zell told Lingor.”A large number of people believe this is a light sentence. They’re not the ones who are going to have to walk a pretty perfect line.”
The Judge recognized the high emotions in the courtroom, but said his job is to not rule based on emotion or sympathy, but on facts.
Judge Zell noted the responsibility in this incident rests with not just one party, noting there were several violations of the law that night including breaking curfew, drug dealing, theft, speeding and reckless driving.
Judge Zell noted the larger message should be sent to parents, who ultimately are responsible for ensuring their children are abiding by the laws.
“I’m watching you,” Judge Zell told Lingor, ‘If you mess up, you know where you’re going.”
Lingor’s parents are still facing charges for what police say were attempts to cover up the 2017 crash.