- Associated Press - Saturday, December 19, 2015

WILKES-BARRE, Pa. (AP) - A northeastern Pennsylvania man convicted in the death of his 2½-month-old son says he wishes he had died instead of the child.

Fifty-year-old Corey Eckrote of Nanticoke spoke Friday before a Luzerne County judge sentenced him to two to six years in prison on involuntary manslaughter and child endangerment convictions.

Police said Jaxon Eckrote suffocated in a recliner last year while his mother, Tracey Gonda, slept after drinking beer. Gonda was sentenced last month to 15 months to five years after pleading guilty to child endangerment and corruption of minors.

Eckrote apologized in court, saying his son didn’t deserve what happened as the result of what the defendant called his “irresponsible actions.” Judge David Lupas, however, said his actions were not merely a mistake but a crime.

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