A Mexican actor convicted of involuntary manslaughter was sentenced to five years in prison on Friday for issuing a deadly punch during a road rage confrontation in Miami in 2019.
Pablo Lyle, 36, a telenovela star who appeared in Netflix’s “Yankee,” faced a maximum sentence of up to 15 years in prison in the death of 63-year-old Juan Ricardo Hernández.
Security cameras reportedly showed Lyle punch Hernández in the face after an argument on the road. Lyle claimed the punch was in self-defense, adding that he feared the man was armed and his children were scared.
According to the Associated Press, Hernández was not armed and died at the hospital four days later from a traumatic brain injury.
Friday’s sentencing by Miami-Dade Circuit Judge Marisa Tinkler Mendez came almost four years after Lyle was charged with murder in the incident and two months after she rejected the actor’s request for a new trial.
In addition to the five-year sentence, the judge ordered Lyle to eight years of probation, conflict resolution management and 500 hours of community service.
Lyle has 30 days to appeal the sentence.
During the sentencing hearing, which lasted more than three hours, Lyle reportedly looked calm and expressed remorse for his actions.
“I am very sorry,” Lyle said in Spanish, looking at some of Hernández’s family members who were in the courtroom. “I always pray for him and for you, with all my heart.”
The victim’s son was among those family members and had reportedly asked the judge to sentence Lyle to the 15-year maximum. He said he was with his father the day before the altercation.
“I didn’t want to believe it was him,” Hernández’s son said of going to the hospital to see his father after receiving news of the incident.
He described his father as a “very happy, attentive person, with good health and principles.”
During the trial, Lyle’s lawyers argued that the punch was in self-defense and said there were inconsistencies with the evidence provided.
The judge, on the other hand, said Lyle made a “poor decision” by acting “out of anger.”
“The evidence shows that the action of Mr. Lyle was an act of violence,” Tinkler said. “Mr. Lyle has to be held responsible for those actions.”
At the hearing, Lyle’s wife, sister and brother-in-law offered testimony before the decision.
The incident took place on March 31, 2019, when Lyle’s bother-in-law was taking him, his wife and two children to the airport. Surveillance video released at the time showed Hernández get out of his car at a stop light to confront Lyle’s brother-in-law, who was in front of him at the light, for reportedly cutting him off.
The brother-in-law got out of the car to argue with Hernández, who eventually turned around to head back toward his car. At that moment, Lyle jumped out of the car, ran toward Hernández and punched him before getting back into the car and leaving the scene.
Hernández reportedly collapsed in the road near his car.
Lyle had been detained since his conviction on Oct. 4.