The grandfather who was charged in his granddaughter’s death pleaded guilty to negligent homicide.
Salvatore ‘Sam’ Anello from Indiana will not serve any prison time but will serve probation, CBS News reported.
Anello’s granddaughter passed away after falling from a docked Royal Caribbean cruise ship window last summer.
He had been holding the toddler up to an open window on the deck when she fell 150 feet to her death in July 2019.
The grandfather initially pleaded not guilty, saying he believed there was glass and that he wouldn’t put the girl there if he had known it was open.
Anello said in a statement: “At the moment the accident happened, it was as if this wall of protective glass disappeared.
“I was in complete disbelief … I wasn’t drinking and I wasn’t dangling her out of a window. I just wanted to knock on the glass with her as we did together so many times before … I was placed in charge of keeping my beautiful granddaughter safe and I failed.”
While his grieving family did not press any charges, prosecutors in Puerto Rico charged the grandfather with negligent homicide.
In an interview with CBS News in November 2019, Anello said: “Chloe being gone is the worst thing ever. So I’m like, whatever. There’s nothing worse that they could do to me than what’s already happened.”
Anello announced his decision to change his plea in February. He said at that time: “I took a plea deal today to try to help end part of this nightmare for my family, if possible.”
The family’s attorney said: “This decision was an incredibly difficult one for Sam and the family, but because the plea agreement includes no jail time and no admission of facts, it was decided the plea deal is in the best interests of the family so that they can close this horrible chapter and turn their focus to mourning Chloe and fighting for cruise passenger safety.”
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