The grandfather charged in the death of a toddler who fell to her death through an open window of a Royal Caribbean cruise ship in July has been offered a plea deal, according to the man’s attorney.
Salvatore Anello, 51, is charged with negligent homicide in the death of his 18-month-old granddaughter, Chloe Wiegand.
Anello adamantly maintains his innocence and does not want a deal with prosecutors but has not ruled it out, according to Jose Perez, the defense attorney in the case.
Anello appeared in a Puerto Rico court Tuesday for a hearing to decide if he wants a trial by jury or judge.
Perez, in an interview with CBS News, said no official deal was yet on the table for Anello.
Perez told CBS the agreement would require Anello to plead guilty to negligent homicide. In exchange, he would get no jail time and minimum probation and supervision, CBS reported.
“It's firm that he is innocent and he does not want to plea," Perez said but added that Anello is considering the deal.
A week ago, Chloe's parents filed a lawsuit against Royal Caribbean Cruises, blaming the company for the accident.
Chloe plummeted more than 150 feet on the Freedom of the Seas cruise liner while it was docked in San Juan on July 7.
Anello said he placed the girl on a rail so she could bang on the glass like she would at her brother's ice hockey games. He said she then slipped from his arms and fell through the open window that he mistakenly thought was closed.
Anello is expected back in court next month.
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