Crime: Phoenix dad pleads to manslaughter after claiming to protect daughter at gas station - - PressFrom - US
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Crime Phoenix dad pleads to manslaughter after claiming to protect daughter at gas station

20:45  07 november  2019
20:45  07 november  2019 Source:   azcentral.com

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A Phoenix father who said he killed a man while protecting his daughter has agreed to a plea deal.

a man looking at the camera: Melvin Harris© Maricopa County Sheriff's Office Melvin Harris

Melvin Harris, 41, pleaded guilty to manslaughter on Monday.

He was originally charged with second-degree murder in 2018. Harris went to pick up his teenage daughter and her two friends at the QT near 19th and Dunlap avenues on Aug. 2, 2018, according to police reports and court records.

When Harris' daughter came outside, she told Harris that a man tried to get inside her locked stall in the women's restroom.

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The man was escorted outside by security and Harris' daughter pointed him out to her father. Harris told the security guard to take care of the situation or he would do it himself, according to police and court records.

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Witnesses said Harris punched Leon Armstrong in the face and knocked him down. Harris continued to beat the man and then left, according to records.

Harris told police that he punched Armstrong after the man swung at him first. He claimed Armstrong fell to the ground on his own and that he did not touch him once he was on the ground.

Armstrong received a severe brain injury and died a few days later.

Harris is scheduled to be sentenced Dec. 13.

Have thoughts about Arizona’s legal system? Reach criminal justice reporter Lauren Castle at Lauren.Castle@gannett.com. Follow her on Twitter: @Lauren_Castle.

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This article originally appeared on Arizona Republic: Phoenix dad pleads to manslaughter after claiming to protect daughter at gas station

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