GUILTY PLEA: Father Accidentally Kills Daughter

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The Ankeny father who shot and killed his daughter told a judge Tuesday it was all an accident. Scott Hazelbaker took a plea deal admitting guilt to involuntary manslaughter.

For almost two weeks, Hazelbaker planned on pleading guilty. He`s spent countless hours with his attorney preparing for this moment. But when the judge asked why he made this decision, his lawyer Trevor hook had to step in and help Hazelbaker accept what he has done. “It was somebody he loved and every time he talks about that he gets choked up obviously,” Hook said.

Hazelbaker admitted to pointing a gun at his 18-year-old daughter Emily. He told the judge he thought the safety was on when he accidentally pulled the trigger.  It wasn't.  The bullet killed her on June 14th.

By pleading guilty to this Class D Felony Hazelbaker could spend up to 5 years in prison. “He doesn`t have a criminal history so we will be requesting probation,” Hook said.

Hook says even if the judge is sympathetic to his client, what happened can never be undone. Hazelbaker’s sentencing is set for October 31st.