FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
Monday, May 16, 2016
Brooklyn Man Sentenced to Up to 15 Years in Prison for Fatal Crash
That Left 12-Year-Old Girl Dead, Mother and Sister Injured
Defendant Pleaded Guilty to Top Count of Manslaughter for Speeding in Stolen Car,
Losing Control of Vehicle, Jumping Sidewalk and Killing Joie Sellers
Brooklyn District Attorney Ken Thompson today announced that a 28-year-old Brooklyn man has been sentenced to the maximum of five to 15 years in prison following his guilty plea to second-degree manslaughter for the 2014 fatal car crash in Flatlands that left a young girl dead and her mother and sister seriously injured.
The District Attorney said, “Robert DeCarlo was sentenced to the maximum allowed by law on this case, but this will never compensate for the loss of Joie Sellers, a beautiful and vibrant young girl who was robbed of her life because of the defendant’s reckless and irresponsible actions. We will continue to hold drivers accountable for the choices they make behind the wheel.”
The District Attorney said that the defendant, Robert DeCarlo, 28, of Brooklyn, was sentenced today to an indeterminate term of five to 15 years in prison by Brooklyn Supreme Court Justice Matthew D’Emic. The defendant pleaded guilty to the top count of second-degree manslaughter and to two counts of second-degree assault on April 29, 2016. Justice D’Emic also sentenced the defendant to three-and-a-half years, to run concurrent, following the defendant’s guilty plea to second-degree robbery stemming from a 2014 incident.
The District Attorney said that, according to the investigation, at approximately 4:45 p.m., on July 2, 2014 the defendant was driving a 2005 Dodge Caravan minivan westbound on Flatlands Avenue, near Schenectady Avenue, speeding in excess of 50 miles per hour in a 30 mph zone. The defendant lost control of the vehicle, then mounted the sidewalk striking three pedestrians: Joie Sellers, 12; her sister, Charli Sellers, 9, and their mother, Marcia Landais, 38.
The defendant climbed out of the window and fled the scene, according to the investigation. He surrendered the following day. The minivan had been stolen days prior to the fatal crash.
Joie Sellers suffered massive injuries; she was rushed to Kings County Hospital, where she was pronounced dead. Charli Sellers suffered head trauma and was in a coma for several weeks. Landais suffered pelvic fractures. Both underwent physical therapy to recover from their injuries.
The case was prosecuted by Assistant District Attorney Gayle M. Dampf, Chief of the District Attorney’s Vehicular Crimes Bureau.