A state-prison inmate will not escape his plea agreement that jails him up to 60 years for the 2011 killing of a Lancaster mother.
Christopher L. Lassitter provided the loaded gun and getaway vehicle for the killing of Diana Spencer, which he and two co-defendants planned.
Spencer, the girlfriend of a rival gang leader, was fatally shot through her front door by Oscar Martinez, who is serving life in prison. Jakwan Green, who went to the door with Martinez, also is serving life.
The three men were members of the “Bloods,” according to court testimony and a Pennsylvania Superior Court decision filed Thursday.
In the decision, the high court denies Lassitter’s appeal claim that he believed his plea agreement – 30 to 60 years – was actually for 20 to 40 years. Lassitter, now 29, claims he asked his attorney to file an appeal immediately after sentencing.
The high court agreed with Lancaster County Judge David Ashworth’s initial denial of the appeal, writing that Lassitter never asked his attorney to file the appeal. Since if wasn’t filed right away, the high court ordered, it’s too late to file now.
Assistant District Attorney Trista Boyd argued that in her response to Lassitter’s appeal.
The Superior Court dismissed Lassitter’s testimony at a prior hearing that he sent two letters to his attorney asking for appeal. Lassitter provided no proof of those letters, testifying, “I’m saying I put (them) in the mailbox.”
The attorney testified that the defense worked hard to get a plea agreement; prosecutors intended to seek the death penalty against the three defendants because three of Spencer’s four children were home, along with a female friend who was near Spencer when she was shot.
Lassitter wanted the plea agreement, the attorney testified. He didn’t request an appeal.
“This isn’t the kind of 180 (degree) reversal that I would forget about,” the attorney testified.
First Assistant District Attorney Christopher P. Larsen prosecuted the three men.
Lancaster police Detective Kurtis Miller filed the charges.
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