Trenton man admits to 2014 slaying in plea deal

A city man who appeared headed for trial has accepted a plea deal that will send him to prison for nearly two decades for killing another city man in 2014.

Tomarkus Whitfield

Tomarkus Whitfield

Tomarkus Whitfield, 38, recently accepted a plea deal that will send him to prison for 19 and a half years for killing Pinkey Priester in June 2014.

Whitfield pumped more than 10 rounds into the 30-year-old Priester on June 16, 2014, on the 300 block of Centre Street. The men had a longstanding financial dispute that turned violent that day.

Arrested by U.S. Marshals and charged with murder and weapons offenses, Whitfield admitted to a lesser charge of aggravated manslaughter under a negotiated plea with prosecutors, a spokeswoman said in a statement.

He is being sentenced in February, when a judge is expected to impose the plea deal that requires Whitfield to serve roughly 16 and a half years before he’s eligible for parole under the state’s No Early Release Act targeting violent offenders.

Assistant Prosecutor Michelle Gasparian handled the case, which appeared poised for trial earlier this year.

In March, defense attorney Ron Garzio asked a judge for more time to review police reports and other documents handed over in discovery. The judge granted his request and later set the case down for plea cutoff.

Whitfield is behind bars on a $750,000 cash bail.

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