Three of four Louisiana teenagers charged with murder for stealing a car and dragging a grandmother to her death have taken plea deals to avoid life in prison.
Briniyah Baker, 17, Lenyra Theophile, 16, and Mar’qel Curtis pleaded guilty to attempted homicide for the killing of 73-year-old Linda Frickey in New Orleans on Monday. 4 WWL reported.
The three teenagers were sentenced to 20 years in prison and must each serve at least 15 years.
The admission of guilt comes more than a year after Frickey’s gruesome death, in which her arm was also severed.
“I was relieved because that’s what we’ve been looking for all this time,” Jinnylynn Griffin, Frickey’s sister, told the outlet.
Griffin said she was “sad” for the teens, even though they had accepted responsibility for her sister’s death.
“They probably didn’t want to go so far as to commit murder, but they still tried to steal a car. This is still a crime,” she told the outlet.
The three girls apologized to Frickey’s family in court and asked for forgiveness in the courtroom.
“I think they’ve really sincerely apologized and we appreciate them admitting their guilt and accepting their punishment and hopefully over time everyone can recover,” Frickey’s sister-in-law Kathy Richard told the outlet.
However, the family must return to the courtroom to learn in detail about their loved one’s death as a fourth defendant, John Honore, 18, will stand trial.
“John Honore deserves no mercy,” Richard said. “We will show him the same mercy that he showed Linda. Nobody.”
“We want him to get the most out of it. He drove the car. He stomped on her,” Griffin said. “The girls were all there to go, but the problem we had with them was that they didn’t do anything to stop it.”
All four defendants had been charged as adults with second-degree murder in connection with Frickey’s death after they violently ambushed her in a New Orleans neighborhood in March 2022 and dragged her nearly a block after her arm became stuck in her seatbelt.
With no regard for the grandmother’s life, the teens reportedly stopped the vehicle to open the door so Honore could kick the grandmother out into the street after her arm came loose and her clothing was removed.
Frickey was trying to put something in her car when the teens “got in and threw her out and she got stuck in the wheel well,” an eyewitness said WWL TV by the time.
“I heard screams like, ‘You’re about to die!'” said the witness.
Neighbor Leanne Mascar had been walking in the area when she heard the screams and described the horrific scene that followed Fox 8.
“She was screaming, and she was screaming to please let her go, and then they slowed down and opened the door to throw her out,” Mascar said, adding that she “just started running” to help the grandmother.
“I thought if I could somehow, I don’t know what I could do, but I thought if I could get her out of that car… When I looked down, her body was already there and her arm… It’s easy not for you “Expect to see it,” she said.
Mascar said she grabbed a sheet to cover Frickey after she was left on the street.
“She lay there naked and I thought of the humiliation she had just suffered; It was already too much.”
Her husband, Mark Mascar, was nearby during the horrific carjacking and rushed to help his wife. He told the outlet that they “sat next to a woman who is a mother or a grandmother and watched her disappear.”
“I told her to hold on because every time I heard a siren I hoped and prayed it was the ambulance. I kept telling her to hold on, breathing, her eyes moving. “I’ve never seen anything so horrific,” Mark added.
Frickey’s gray SUV was found later that day 13 blocks from where she died.
With the three teenage girls pleading guilty, the Frickey family hopes they will use their long sentences to reflect.
“I don’t think they’ve really realized the impact of their actions and hopefully while they’re in prison and incarcerated they’ll get involved in programs to maybe help the next generation to speak out and be an example, that there are consequences for your actions,” Richard said.
Honore’s trial begins on November 27th.