VERSAILLES — A man charged with the 2011 murder of a Prestonsburg teenager pleaded guilty to first-degree manslaughter Wednesday in Woodford County Circuit Clerk.
According to the Woodford County Commonwealths Attorney’s office, Alexander Muniz, 28, originally was charged with murder in the death of 18-year-old James Michael Crowe, a Prestonsburg native who had moved to Versailles. On Wednesday, he pleaded guilty to first-degree manslaughter and tampering with physical evidence.
Muniz will serve 15 years for the charge of manslaughter, and five years for the charge of tampering with physical evidence. He will be required to serve 85 percent of his time in prison before becoming eligible for parole.
Crowe’s aunt, Jackie Ousley, said she was hoping for more time.
“We were obviously hoping to get a lot more time out of it,” said Ousley. “But that’s the best they said that could do for us.”
Ousley said drug dealers often get 20 years, and here is someone who violently murdered a kid getting a similar sentence. “He was shot nine times. Three times in the face,” Ousley said of her nephew’s tragic end. She said she is still haunted by the image of Crowe’s body after the shooting.
“He was such a precious kid,” Ousley said.
Crowe’s body was located in a parking lot at Arbor Place Drive, in Versailles, on April 22, 2011. According to police reports at the time, Muniz and Crowe knew each other for around a week before the shooting.
Muniz is currently being held in the Woodford County Detention Center. His sentencing is scheduled for June 6, in Woodford Circuit Court.