A factory worker whom a jury convicted of killing his girlfriend’s 18-month-old son while baby-sitting in Uniondale is heading to prison after saying Wednesday he would exchange his life for the toddler’s if possible.
Acting State Supreme Court Justice Jerald Carter sentenced Lord Pardo, 28, of Uniondale, to 5 to 15 years behind bars following his second-degree manslaughter conviction in June.
Before hearing his punishment, Pardo told the judge he was “deeply sorry for what happened to the baby.”
The Haitian immigrant said in his heart, he had considered victim Mason Robinson to be his son, even though he knew the child wasn’t.
“If it were possible for me to exchange my life for the life of the baby, I would do that today. . . . I am truly sorry from the bottom of my heart, and for all the pain that I’ve caused the family and their loss,” Pardo added.
The jury had acquitted Pardo of murder and first-degree manslaughter charges in the New Cassel child’s Oct. 11, 2015, death.
Carter gave Pardo the maximum sentence by law, invoking a Biblical passage during the proceeding, while also saying he found it unbelievable the defendant had considered Mason to be like a son because of the way he had treated the child.
“There is a passage that talks about suffer the little children unto me and I will give them peace. This child suffered and you gave that child no peace,” Carter said.
Prosecutors said at Pardo’s trial that he lacerated Mason’s liver and one of his lungs, while also inflicting head injuries and fracturing some of his ribs during a “depraved” attack. They said Pardo then sat by, without calling 911, and let Mason die.
Pardo later drove the toddler — who already was dead — to his mother’s grocery store workplace in Jericho after telling her he couldn’t wake her son up, according to prosecutors.
But Pardo’s attorney, Jeffrey Groder of Mineola, argued at the trial that Mason fell off a bed during a diaper change, then out of Pardo’s arms when he picked him up to comfort him before feeding him and putting him down for a nap.
Mason’s mother, Marie Eristhene, 24, testified during the trial that Pardo only told her that her son “fell” after bringing the child to her job site.
Prosecutor Kyle Rose-Louder told the judge Wednesday that Eristhene had planned to speak in court, but “just could not bring herself to be here.” She added that Eristhene wanted the maximum punishment for Pardo as she continued to seek the truth about exactly what happened to her son.
“She doesn’t believe that the defendant has ever told anyone what really happened that day. That’s something that has been at the forefront of her mind and still haunts her,” Rose-Louder said.
Nassau District Attorney Madeline Singas said in a statement that Pardo’s prison sentence “holds him accountable for this truly despicable crime,” but that “no sentence can erase the pain of losing a child.”
Groder said after court that his client maintains what happened was an accident and is planning an appeal.