CLEVELAND (AP) - A 16-year-old boy was sentenced to five years' probation for involuntary manslaughter in the death of a friend who was shot by Cleveland police last year after a chase in a stolen car.
Malcolm Hoyle, who was shot in the face, drove the car with Ricardo Mason, 16, in the passenger seat.
Hoyle (pictured, above) was indicted, prosecutors said, because his actions led to the shooting that killed Mason.
Assistant County Prosecutor Blaise Thomas said Hoyle should have been sentenced Thursday to prison.
Cuyahoga County Common Pleas Judge Ann Mannen said sending Hoyle to prison would have "created a career criminal. I refuse to do that in these circumstances."
Mannen ordered Hoyle to remain on home detention, wearing an ankle monitor, for six months, and said he must perform 200 hours of community service, get his high school diploma and attend drug and alcohol counseling.
Mannen said she will sentence Hoyle to one year in prison if he violates any of the conditions.
Hoyle's case was transferred out of Juvenile Court. Defense lawyer Terry Gilbert said that Cleveland police were to blame for Mason's death, and he called the shooting "totally unnecessary."
On Aug. 27, police officers Matthew Baeppler and Robert Taylor spotted Hoyle driving a stolen car.
They pursued the car into an alley, where Hoyle hit a fence post and, according to the officers, tried to back up. Taylor, who was behind the car, fired two shots, hitting Mason once in the back.
Baeppler fired one round, hitting Hoyle in the cheek.
The two officers were cleared of wrongdoing by the same grand jury that indicted Hoyle.