Man Sentenced in Philly Traffic Dispute Death Case

A man convicted of involuntary manslaughter in the beating death of a pedestrian following a Philadelphia traffic dispute three years ago has been sentenced to 11½ to 23 months in prison.

Twenty-three-year-old Gerald Shaffer Jr. was sentenced Wednesday in the April 2010 death of 54-year-old Mark Wallace. Prosecutors said he crossed the street in front of a sport utility vehicle driven by Shaffer's father and was thrown to the ground in the ensuing fight with both men.

Wallace died after 13 days on life support. A portion of his skull was removed to alleviate brain swelling and he also suffered a broken nose and clavicle.

Wallace's family removed him from life support in April 2010.

"I'm really gonna miss him and I just home that these people really get what they deserve," Wallace's sister Nancy Kolenkiewicz said at the time.

Shaffer was convicted in January of the charge but acquitted of third-degree murder and conspiracy. His father, a 23-year veteran of the Philadelphia Fire Department, was also charged charged, but died of a heart attack in 2011..

Defense attorney James Funt, argued that his client was trying to stop the fight.

Assistant District Attorney Peter Lim said the defendant “wanted to be a tough guy” like his father.

Copyright AP - Associated Press
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