Aug. 19—CLEVELAND — A judge has sentenced the man charged with the murder of a Cleveland firefighter to life in prison with the possibility of parole after 16 years.
Leander Bissell, 41, hit Geneva native Johnny Tetrick, a 27-year veteran of the Cleveland Fire Department, with his car in a hit-and-run crash on Interstate 90 last November.
Tetrick, a father of three daughters, grew up in Geneva and graduated from Geneva High School in 1989.
He was working the scene of a motor vehicle accident around 8:15 p.m. near the Martin Luther King exit. Bissell drove around emergency vehicles, through the accident scene, plowed into Tetrick and then drove off, police have said.
Firefighters gave police a description of the car and police caught up with Bissell soon after, according to police.
Bissell was convicted in July of several felony counts including murder and felonious assault, according to court records.
On Tuesday, Cuyahoga County Common Pleas Judge Timothy McCormick sentenced Bissell to serve his time at the Lorain Correctional Institute, according to court records.
Bissell was sentenced to 15 years to life on his charges of murder, felonious assault and vehicular homicide, which were merged at sentencing due to their similarity. He was also sentenced to an additional year in prison for failing to stop after the accident, which must be served in addition to his life sentence. He’s also now under a lifetime suspension of his driver’s license, according to court records.
Since his arrest, Bissell has been held in jail on a $500,000 bond, according to court records.
Bissell was also sentenced Tuesday to three to four-and-a-half years in prison in a separate drug trafficking case.