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Father Sentenced To 8 Years In Prison After Protecting Daughter From Alleged Predator

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An Arizona father has been sentenced to eight years in prison after he assaulted a man who followed his teenage daughter into a restroom stall. More inside…

An Arizona father was given a harsh sentence for simply protecting his daughter from being sexually assaulted.

41-year-old Melvin Harris III (above) fatally beat a man who he said followed his teenage daughter inside a restroom stall. Now, he’s facing 8 years in prison. He accepted a plea deal on a manslaughter charge after initially facing a second-degree murder charge in connection with the incident that went down last year.

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Melvin was reportedly waiting in his car for his daughter and her friends. He had just picked them up from work and stopped by the continence store so the girls could use the restroom.

When his daughter came out of the store she said a man - later identified as 27-year-old Leon Leevon Armstrong (above) - tried to force his way inside the bathroom she was in at the QuikTrip convenience store. The enraged father approached Leon (who had asked him for money right before he went inside the store) and started beating him down in the parking lot of the convenience store in Phoenix, Arizona. According to court documents, Melvin punched Leon in the face, kicked and stomped him.

Melvin reportedly told police told police that Leon swung at him first and then fell down on his own. He said once Leon was on the ground, he didn't touch him.

The victim (who had a lengthy criminal history) died days later from a severe brain swelling, a nasal fracture and loss of oxygen.

Now, a Change.org petition has been launched to free Melvin Harris III for protecting his daughter. You can sign it here.

"This sets a dangerous precedent, as this man was only trying to protect his family," the petition reads. "This man should have all charges dropped. The only solution is for all charges to be dropped and expunged from Mr. Harris' record."

 

Do you think the charges were too harsh for a father who was simply trying to protect his daughter? Let us know in the comments! 

 

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Photo: Maricopa County Sheriff’s Office

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