A man who drove his car over a 3-year-old boy after a botched drug deal pleaded guilty to murder, avoiding a trial and the possibility of spending 30 years in prison.
Terry Wayne Giles, 32, pleaded guilty to third-degree murder Monday and was sentenced to 15 years in prison, according to court records.
He could have received up to 30 years.
The charge against Giles stemmed from an incident Aug. 25 during which Giles was attempting to get away from two men who police say were drug dealers.
Giles was driving a green Dodge at Pennsylvania Avenue and Jones Street in Clearwater, according to court records.
He flagged down a man and offered $20 for a piece of crack cocaine, but instead gave the man $1 and sped away on Jones Street, police said.
Giles drove up a dead end, put his car in reverse and drove backward on Jones.
The two men were waiting for him.
They tossed bricks and bottles at the car, causing Giles to lose control.
The car backed over Lamar Ford, who was standing between a sign and an oak tree.
Bystanders yelled that the boy was pinned under the car, but Giles put the car in drive and sped away, running over the boy a second time, police said.
The two other men who were involved in the drug transaction and who threw the bottle and brick at Giles' car also face prison sentences.
State law makes a person committing a felony responsible for any deaths that occur during that felony.
Christopher C. Williams, 23, pleaded guilty last month to third-degree murder.
Williams is scheduled to be sentenced Feb. 21. He was scheduled to testify against Giles.
Damuel Montez Battle, 20, pleaded no contest last month to third-degree murder and two unrelated counts of burglary and grand theft.
In exchange for his plea, he was given a 13-year sentence in prison.
The maximum possible sentence in his case would have been 17 years.
_ MIKE JACKSON
and THOMAS C. TOBIN