A man accused of hitting a 19 year old with his car and leaving that teen for dead on the roadside pleaded guilty today and was sentenced to prison.
William Langley was arrested in June, 10 months to the day of the hit and run that killed Austin Baeza. Investigators say Baeza was walking along Highway 33 in Pitt County when he was killed.
Langley was sentenced to a minimum of 23 months in prison and a maximum of 37 months. That includes time served, and he may be eligible for work release.
Both the Baeza family and Langley's family were in the courtroom today. Langley, dressed in an orange jumpsuit, spoke to his family and waved hello.
Langley said, "I'm taking full responsibility. I'm sorry for your loss, his death will haunt me for the rest of my life and I hope one day, you'll find in your heart just to forgive me. God bless you all, sorry."
As the sentencing phase began, some members of the Baeza family cried and wiped tears away as investigators explained the events that led to Austin's death.
Pitt County investigators says tips led them to Langley in June, and that Langley then confessed after questioning.
Investigators say Langley knew that on that early morning in August 2012 he hit something and even turned around to see what it was but didn't see anything and went home.
Later that morning, Baeza said he saw the news about the hit and run death of Baeza in the area where it had happened.
He told investigators he panicked and sold the Dodge Truck at an Edgecombe County salvage yard where the vehicle was crushed.
Baesa's mother Nicolette said, "We'll never be satisfied with any sentence you may serve. We're already suffering a life sentence, a life sentence forced upon us, no decision no options. We have to be satistifed that we know who did it, we know what happened, and we can hopefully move on."