A man convicted of second-degree murder and drunken driving charges for an April 2013 crash that killed a 3-year-old boy being carried across a South Los Angeles street by his mother was sentenced Friday to 15 years to life in state prison.

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Rafael German, 29, was found guilty last May 7 of one count each of second-degree murder and driving on a suspended license and two drunken driving charges involving the April 11, 2013, crash.

At a Dec. 7 hearing, Los Angeles Superior Court Judge Charlaine Olmedo denied the defense’s motion for a new trial for German.

The judge noted at that hearing that German’s blood-alcohol content was twice the legal limit, and disagreed with a defense attorney’s assertion that the accident would likely have happened even if German was sober.

German was behind the wheel of an SUV that struck the woman and her son on Avalon Boulevard at 80th Street on the evening of April 11, 2013.

A group of angry bystanders helped ensure that German didn’t flee the scene, according to the judge.

The toddler died of his injuries at a hospital four days later, just eight days before his fourth birthday.

— City News Service

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