BELTON, Mo. -- Since 2011, a Belton man has lost three family members in two drunk driving accidents. The first killed his mother and sister, the second his father. One man is in prison, the other was set to go on trial Monday, but the case was postponed.
Tyler Bronson was ready to walk into the Jackson County Courthouse Monday morning for the start of a manslaughter trial. Instead, he will be back on May 1st, the date a plea hearing is scheduled.
"It's been very rough, very rough, very lonely, with Easter, I don't have anywhere to go for the holidays anymore," Bronson explained.
It's been just over a year since he lost his father, Buddy. Ronald O'Kelly is accused of driving drunk, running a red light and hitting Buddy, who was on his motorcycle. Court records say in the early morning hours of April 7, 2013, O'Kelly was allegedly speeding and on his cell phone, then fled the scene of the accident.
"I'd love to see the kid get the maximum penalty that the law allows," said Tyler.
But now he isn't sure what will happen and he's already disappointed in the system. In 2011, a drunk driver going the wrong way on I-435 crashed head on into a car his mother and sister were in, they were both killed.
Felix Solano Gallardo was convicted and given 15-year sentences for each death, but the terms are being served concurrently, basically cutting the total time in half. Tyler said he had his dad to lean on during that case, and even though his father isn't here to help now, he's sure Buddy wouldn't be happy.
"He'd be very upset to see that there's a plea bargain potentially in the process of being made, he'd be upset to hear that. But he'd tell me push forward," explained Tyler.
While he waits for the May 1st court date, all Tyler can do is ask prosecutors to do the best they can.
"Don't let him off easy with a small plea bargain. Try to make justice happen in giving this kid as much time as they possibly could," pleaded Tyler.