POSTED: Friday, March 25, 2011 - 12:25pm
UPDATED: Monday, March 28, 2011 - 11:22am
Baton Rouge, La (NBC33) — A four-year-old shooting case comes to a close Friday after the man accused of killing an Olive Garden employee admitted his guilt.
Tracy Young will spend the rest of his life in jail for shooting Aaron Arnold in the Olive Garden Parking lot back in September of 2007. Young was facing the death penalty.
Sanchez Brumfeld, who was young's accomplice, has already been convicted of first-degree murder charges. Brumfeld was sentenced to death, but District Attorney Hillar Moore says that sentence will likely be reduced to life in prison.
For relatives of Young, and the man he killed, it was an emotional day in the courtroom.
"We're going to miss our son forever," says Arnold's father, Bob. For Bob Arnold and his family, it's been a long road to find redemption for his son's murder, and today, justice was finally served.
"We're glad it's over with," he says, "but its very difficult on both sides."
While Young's plea doesn't end the family's suffering, it does mark the close to a case that's been haunting them for years. "I think the crime has been extinguished in my mind," says Arnold.
Inside the courtroom, Young expressed his sincerest apologies to the victim's family, saying if he could trade places with Arnold, he would.
"This family showed mercy to the killer of their son, who showed no mercy," says Hillar Moore, East Baton Rouge District Attorney.
It was a kindness not lost on Young's family. "All I can say is I apologize to the Arnold's that is happened this way," says Reneen Johnson, Young's oldest sister. "I'm going to keep them in prayer everyday."
Young's oldest sister says she supported her brother's decision and is thankful that he won't face the death penalty. "Death is strong words," she says. "I know he didn't want that. My family didn't want that. We apologize that this did happen."
Now, the families will move forward, hoping to put the events of that fateful day behind them. "It's not bringing our son back, but I think we can start the healing process," says Arnold.
NBC33 did attempt to contact young's attorney. Margaret Lagattuta chose not to say anything out of respect for the victim's family.
Sanchez Brumfield, the driver of the vehicle, has already been convicted and given the death penalty in the "Olive Garden Case".