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Man Acquitted of Manslaughter of Massapequa Cop

Jonathan Lopez convicted of lesser charges against him. He faces up to a year in jail and will be sentenced in January.

Johnathan Lopez Photo: NCPD
Johnathan Lopez Photo: NCPD
Story by Carisa Giardino

A jury has acquitted an East Meadow man of manslaughter stemming from a three-car crash in 2011 that killed an off-duty New York City police officer from Massapequa.

Jonathan Lopez, 22, was convicted of the lesser charges against him, including assault, reckless driving and reckless endangerment. He faces up to one year in jail and is scheduled to be sentenced Jan. 16.

If convicted of the felony Lopez faced up to 15 years in prison.

“We respect the jury’s careful and lengthy deliberations in this difficult case," Shams Tarek, communications director for District Attorney Kathleen Rice, said. "Street racing endangers everyone on the road and its seriousness is reflected in the jury’s guilty verdicts.”

In September 2011, Kevin Jessup, 25, was driving a Nissan Maxima east of the Bethpage Parkway when he was struck by another Nissan driven by Lopez, who also rear ended a third vehicle, according to New York State Police.

Jessup and a passenger were transported to Nassau University Medical Center where Jessup was pronounced dead, police said. The passenger in Jessup's vehicle was admitted for non-life threatening injuries. Lopez and the driver of the second car, Dawn Smallwood, were treated and released from area hospitals.

Nassau prosecutors argued Jessup and Lopez were racing before the crash.
Chris O'Connor December 09, 2013 at 09:44 AM
Your not reading the story correctly, the Officer was driving with his girlfriend when Lopez struck him from behind at a rate of speed of 100mph. Lopez was racing another unknown vehicle not the Officer.
LT December 09, 2013 at 07:40 PM
this is the last line of the article "Nassau prosecutors argued Jessup and Lopez were racing before the crash" so I'm still confused. but it's ok
Massa December 09, 2013 at 08:45 PM
No, there was 1 NYPD officer (jessup) who died who was racing. The other guy who (Lopez) who was racing with the officer hit another car the crashed. The women in the other car was some type of Law Enforcement.
Massa December 09, 2013 at 08:46 PM
So it was 3 people, two off dust law enforcement.
LT December 10, 2013 at 07:23 AM
OY! thanx for the clarification Massa. very bad behavior

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