Man sentenced for killing over video game system asks for early release

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Whitfield pleaded guilty Feb. 11, 2014, to charges of involuntary manslaughter and aggravated robbery

Reginald Whitfield, pleaded guilty Feb. 11, 2014, to charges of involuntary manslaughter and aggravated robbery

File Photo: 2014

YOUNGSTOWN, Ohio (WKBN) — One of two men who pleaded guilty to killing a man over a video game system and laptop asked for an early release from prison Tuesday.

Lawyers for Reginald Whitfield, 29, filed the motion in Mahoning County Common Pleas Court asking Judge John Durkin for an early release due to the COVID-19 pandemic.

Whitfield pleaded guilty Feb. 11, 2014, to charges of involuntary manslaughter and aggravated robbery. He was sentenced by Judge Durkin to 13 years in prison for the April 27, 2012, shooting death of Michael Abinghanem, 27, at a Sullivan Street home on the West Side.

At the time of his sentencing, Whitfield has served 641 days in the county jail awaiting the disposition of his case, and that time was credited to his sentence.

Police and prosecutors said Abinghanem, a father of two, went to the home to sell a video game system and laptop computer when he was ambushed and killed.

Kyle Patrick, 26, was the person who planned the robbery and killed the victim, prosecutors said. He is serving a sentence of 34 years to life in prison.

Whitfield’s motion said he is eligible for judicial release and that he had stayed out of trouble in prison and completed classes to find a job should he be released.

At the time of the plea agreement with Whitfield, prosecutors noted they would oppose judicial release. They have yet to file a response.

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