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Shenandoah teen in immigrant death case gets 4 1/2 years

Published April 07. 2011 05:04PM

WILKES-BARRE, Pa. (AP) - A Pennsylvania teenager who testified against two others convicted of federal charges in the fatal beating of an illegal immigrant will spend 4 1/2 years in prison.

Nineteen-year-old Colin Walsh, of Shenandoah Heights, was ordered Wednesday to report to federal prison on May 6. Outside the federal courthouse in Wilkes-Barre, Walsh said he would become "a better person."

Walsh pleaded guilty to a civil rights violation in the 2008 beating death of 25-year-old Luis Ramirez in Shenandoah. He also testified against two other teens at a pair of trials.

Brandon Piekarsky and Derrick Donchak, both of Shenandoah, were acquitted of the most serious state charges against them by an all-white jury before being convicted of civil rights violations in a federal trial. Both were sentenced to nine years in prison.

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