Franklin County

Frankfort man avoids death penalty, pleads guilty in girlfriend's death

FRANKFORT — A Frankfort man will avoid the possibility of the death penalty after pleading guilty Tuesday to first-degree manslaughter in the 2013 death of his girlfriend.

Brian Earle Reed, 42, who was initially charged with murder, also pleaded guilty to violation of a domestic-violence protection order in the May 2013 death of Gypsy Reyes, 28.

According to the plea deal, the recommended sentence for Reed is 20 years in prison. He is not eligible for probation. Reed will be sentenced Feb. 6.

Reed had been scheduled to go to trial on Jan. 12. He might have faced the death penalty had he been found guilty at trial of violating the protection order during the commission of Reyes' death.

The plea deal said the charge was amended from murder to first-degree manslaughter because of "evidentiary considerations."

Reyes was found dead in her apartment on Ewing Court, off Ewing Street in downtown Frankfort.

A friend of Reyes, whom police did not identify, had been at Reyes' apartment the night before Reyes was found dead. The friend told investigators that Reed came to the apartment "very upset," according to a uniform citation.

The friend said Reed and Reyes went into a back room and began fighting. Reed later came out of the room and told the friend to get out of the apartment.

Reyes' friend asked her if she needed help, but Reyes told the friend not to call police.

The friend came back to the apartment the next day. Reed opened the door, and the friend could see what appeared to be Reyes' body under a blanket.

The friend called paramedics, who determined Reyes was dead. The plea deal said she died of "multiple blunt-force injuries to her head." Reed remains in the Franklin County Regional Jail.