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The original item was published from 11/23/2015 10:40:29 AM to 12/26/2015 5:05:01 PM.

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District Attorney

Posted on: November 23, 2015

[ARCHIVED] Lancaster Man Pleads to 3rd-Degree Murder for Killing Rival with Single Stab

A Lancaster man admitted Monday to stabbing to death another man last year on a city street.

Ernie Rivera-Gonzalez pleaded guilty in Lancaster County Court to third-degree murder regarding the Oct. 5, 2014, stabbing of 31-year-old Alex Vazquez-Dones on Stevens Avenue.

Rivera-Gonzalez, 29, will serve 14 to 35 years in state prison, in accordance with a plea agreement arranged by Assistant District Attorney Christine Wilson.

County Judge Jeffery Wright accepted the plea and ordered sentence.

(See Twitter feed for photo.)

In court, Rivera-Gonzalez turned to Vazquez-Dones’ family and asked for forgiveness.

“It should’ve never happened. Forgive me,” he said through an interpreter. “I know it’s difficult because you’ve lost a son. I would ask with all my heart to forgive. It was never my intention.”

Karen Lopez, Vazquez-Dones’ cousin, said the family can’t forgive yet.

“It would be a lie to tell you we forgive you for what you’ve done,” Lopez said. “But one day, we will. Because we are not bad people.

“We just want this to be over.”

Wilson told the judge that Rivera-Gonzalez left his wallet, with photo identification inside, at the stabbing scene. Witnesses told police the man in the photo was the person who stabbed Vazquez-Dones.

Vazquez-Dones died at Lancaster General Hospital of a single stab wound to the chest.

Rivera-Gonzalez was arrested in Connecticut eleven days later.

Lancaster city police Detective Robert Whiteford filed charges.

MEDIA CONTACT: Brett A. Hambright, 717-295-2041;; Twitter: @BrettHambright

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