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Franky Trimby
Frankie Trimby, 20, pleaded guilty to reckless homicide charges in the death of Mark Olson of Normal. The 48-year-old died Nov. 15, 2010, of injuries he suffered when he was struck by a pickup truck the night of Nov. 14 while trying to stop a theft from the warehouse area in the 400 block of South Madison Street, Bloomington. (Courtesy photo/McLean County Sheriff)

BLOOMINGTON — Frankie Trimby was sentenced to 30 months on probation Tuesday in a November hit-and-run incident that killed a 48-year-old Normal man.

Trimby, 20, pleaded guilty in March to reckless homicide in a plea deal that included dismissal of first-degree murder charges involving the Nov. 14 death of Mark Olson.

Co-defendant David Boswell, 23, also of Bloomington, still faces first-degree murder charges. His trial is set for June 13.

Trimby also must serve 180 days in jail, a sentence that amounts to 44 days after he receives credit for 136 days already served. He also is responsible for about $11,000 restitution for Olson’s medical and funeral expenses.

Judge Robert Freitag heard two emotional victim impact statements focusing on what Olson’s death has meant to his family and fiancée, Wendy Simonovic. She told Trimby she has forgiven him but believes he should be held accountable for his role in Olson’s death.

The victim had been helping Simonovic clean up after The Baby Fold’s Festival of Trees at U.S. Cellular Coliseum when he was struck by a pickup truck in the warehouse area of the 400 block of South Madison Street.

After the hearing, Simonovic said she was disappointed with the sentence.

“I’m not happy about it. I was hoping for the five years” requested by State’s Attorney Bill Yoder, she said.

Prosecutors contend that Boswell was the driver and Trimby the passenger in the truck. The pair had been attempting to pick up a grill when Olson saw the men and tried to stop them from driving away. Boswell denies that he was behind the wheel of the truck.

Olson’s brother Ralph Olson described the victim as “a devoted father and awesome grandfather” whose death has affected the family financially and emotionally.

In asking for prison, Yoder said, “Mark Olson paid with his life for the choices made by this defendant and the co-defendant.”

Trimby testified Tuesday that Boswell worked with his father and was staying at the Trimby home because he had nowhere else to live. After Olson was hit, Trimby wanted to call police, according to his testimony, but Boswell refused.

“He said he was not going back to prison and I’d better not tell anybody or he would turn it around on me and say I was the driver,” said Trimby, who also apologized to the victim’s family.

Defense lawyer Hal Jennings said probation was appropriate. “To a certain degree he was a victim,” said Jennings, arguing that Trimby felt threatened by Boswell.

The judge told Trimby that while Olson’s death was beyond tragic, he believes Trimby’s role in the hit-and-run was limited.

“It would be very easy to give in to the emotion and sentence you to a harsh penalty because of the outcome,” said Freitag.

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