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Detroit man pleads guilty in daughter’s crash-related death

January 9, 2019

DETROIT (AP) — A Detroit man whose 7-year-old daughter was struck and killed when she went for help after he crashed a stolen van has pleaded guilty to manslaughter.

The Wayne County prosecutor’s office says 47-year-old Wilburt Dion Thomas also pleaded guilty Wednesday to second-degree child abuse and operating a motor vehicle while intoxicated with an occupant younger than 16. He will be sentenced Jan. 24.

Thomas had been charged with second-degree murder, involuntary manslaughter, second-degree child abuse, operating under the influence, marijuana possession and having an open container.

DeSandra Thomas died July 15 after her father crashed into an abandoned vehicle along Interstate 94 in Romulus, southwest of Detroit. When she went for help, another driver struck her, killing the girl instantly.

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