A Lakewood man who was initially charged with capital murder in the August 2016 death of a taxi driver in Hollywood pleaded no contest to voluntary manslaughter and was sentenced to 11 years in state prison, a spokesman for the Los Angeles County District Attorney’s Office said Tuesday.
The murder count against Najib Halibi, 35, was dismissed as a result of his plea last week in connection with the death of Asifawosen Alemseged, who worked for Yellow Cab and was known in his native Ethiopia as an actor, singer and poet.
The District Attorney’s Office determined that the 11-year prison sentence was an appropriate resolution based on information received about the 47-year-old victim’s cause of death since the case was filed, according to D.A.’s spokesman Paul Eakins. The coroner’s office ruled that the primary cause of death for Alemseged was cardiac arrhythmia, with assault by another person as an associated cause and high-blood pressure and hardening of the arteries as other significant causes, records show.
Halibi was initially charged with murder and a special circumstance allegation of murder during the commission of a robbery in connection with the Aug. 14, 2016, death of the cabbie, who was attacked at a gas station in the area of Franklin Avenue and North Beachwood Drive. He died after being rushed to an area hospital.
Halibi was arrested by Los Angeles police three days later, and Halibi was arrested three days later.