NEW YORK — A success-and-run driver pleaded guilty Friday in a suburban New York crash that killed the father of Nicki Minaj and was promised a yr or much less in jail, disappointing prosecutors and the hip hop star’s mom.
In state court docket in Long Island’s Nassau County, businessman Charles Polevich admitted leaving the scene of the February 2021 accident that fatally injured Robert Maraj as he walked alongside a highway in Mineola.
Polevich initially received out of his car and appeared on the injured man on the bottom, however then drove off, didn’t name 911, garaged his car and lined it with a tarp, authorities mentioned. Polevich pleaded guilty to tampering with proof by concealing the car.
Maraj, 64, died at a hospital the following day.
Judge Howard Sturim mentioned Polevich would get “no a couple of yr in jail,” together with neighborhood service and a suspended license. The 71-year-old is because of be sentenced Aug. 3.
The sufferer’s widow, Carol Maraj, advised reporters she was “not completely happy” with the deliberate sentence. The widow, who is suing Polevich, mentioned seeing him in court docket left her shaking on the reminiscence of her husband combating for his life in the hospital.
Prosecutors, who sought a one-to-three-year jail sentence, additionally took challenge with the deliberate penalty.
“Given the severity of the defendant’s conduct, we disagree with the sentencing dedication from the court docket,” Nassau County District Attorney’s workplace spokesperson Brendan Brosh mentioned in a press release.
Polevich’s lawyer, Marc Gann, known as the hit-and-run “fully out of character” for his shopper, who hails from Long Island however has a drilling and water purification enterprise in Guam.
“He does really feel great empathy for Mr. Maraj’s household and great regret for any position he performed in his loss of life,” Gann mentioned by telephone after court docket. He instructed that Polevich may need had a medical downside that made him not “absolutely conscious of what he was doing,” whereas noting that it wasn’t a authorized justification.
Messages have been despatched to representatives for Nicki Minaj, who known as her father’s loss of life “probably the most devastating lack of my life” in a put up on her web site final yr.
The platinum-selling, Grammy-nominated rapper — identified for tracks together with “Anaconda,” “Starships” and “Super Bass” — was born Onika Tanya Maraj.
In interviews years in the past, she described a troubled relationship together with her father. But she later mentioned he had modified.
After his loss of life, she wrote about wishing she might decide up the telephone and discuss to him.
“He was very liked & will likely be very missed,” she wrote.