By GISELA SALOMON
The Associated Press
MIAMI (AP) — A judge declined on Monday to grant Mexican actor Pablo Lyle a new trial after he was convicted of fatally punching a man during a road rage confrontation in Miami in 2019.
The judge upheld an October jury trial verdict convicting Lyle of involuntary manslaughter and scheduled Lyle’s sentencing for Feb. 3. The 35-year-old Mexican telenovela star, who also appeared in the Netflix crime series “Yankee,” could face a maximum sentence of up to 15 years in prison.
Dressed in a red jail uniform and with his face covered by a medical mask, Lyle made no statements during the 30-minute hearing before Circuit Judge Marisa Tinkler Mendez in Miami. He has been detained since his Oct. 4 conviction.
A six-member jury had found Lyle guilty of involuntary manslaughter in the death of Juan Ricardo Hernández, 63. His lawyers argued there were inconsistencies in the evidence and that no evidence or witnesses had been presented to show that Lyle had acted out of fear for his life and that of his children.
Mendez rejected that argument, ruling there was no reason to vacate the verdict.
“After carefully reviewing all of the issues raised, taken individually or cumulatively, the court does not believe that the claims raised by the defense support the granting of a new trial,” the judge said.
The actor had been accused of punching Hernandez, who died a few days after the March 2019 incident. Lyle’s brother-in-law was taking the actor, his wife and two children to the airport. The car passed that of Hernandez, who stopped at a red light, got out and approached the window of Lyle’s vehicle to claim that they had blocked his way.
Security video footage showed Lyle and Hernandez got into an argument, and that the actor punched Hernandez in the face. Lyle claimed he acted in self-defense and his children were terrified and that he feared Hernandez had a weapon.
The unarmed Hernandez suffered a traumatic brain injury and died four days later at a hospital.
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