HOPE MILLS, N.C. (WNCN) – The teen charged with killing his Hope Mills teen ex-girlfriend accepted a plea deal and pleaded guilty to a charge of second-degree murder Friday morning in Cumberland County court.
The second-degree murder charge carries a sentence of at least 25 years in prison.
Je’Michael Malloy pleaded guilty to killing 15-year-old Danielle Locklear in March 2014.
Police said he and Dominic Lock tied cinder blocks around Locklear’s body and dumped her into the South River just south of Autryville in Sampson County. Her body was discovered on April 2, 2014.
Police say Malloy confessed to killing Locklear a few days after her body was found.
In March, Malloy appeared in court and attorneys were discussing a plea deal that would guarantee him the possibility of parole after 25 years.
On Friday, Malloy apologized to Locklear’s family.
“I know there’s nothing I can do or I can say to bring her back. I do want to apologize for the actions I’ve made. I know sorry doesn’t cut it, but I do I want to say I’m really sorry,” he said.
Locklear’s mother, Rowna Fowler, addressed Malloy in court.
“I can’t watch my baby get her high school diploma. I can’t watch her get married. That was my only one, I can’t have any more children, Je’Michael. You took that away from me. You ripped out my soul,” she said.
Fowler also said the apology doesn’t bring her daughter back.
“It did mean something, but he’s still breathing and my daughter is in the grave so that’s the way I look at it,” Fowler said.
Locklear’s family says they want justice in the case and Malloy’s father has apologized for his son.
“Ain’t nothing I can say, but I’m just sorry. Sorry about all of this. Wish it never would have happened,” Willie Malloy said.