Man accused in hit and run of ex-UFC fighter pleads guilty to manslaughter

The man accused in the hit-and-run death of former UFC fighter Ryan Jimmo hid his truck and replaced the licence plate before turning himself into police two days later.

Anthony Getschel will be sentenced Dec. 3

Anthony Getschel was originally charged with second-degree murder, but pleaded guilty to manslaughter and hit and run. (Supplied/Twitter)

The man accused in the hit-and-run death of former UFC fighter Ryan Jimmo hid his truck and replaced the licence plate before turning himself into police two days later.

The details were included in an agreed statement of facts read in an Edmonton courtroom on Monday.

Jimmo, 34, was killed on June 26, 2016, when he was run over by a truck in a parking lot outside a Whyte Avenue bar. 

Anthony Getschel was charged with second-degree murder. He pleaded not guilty to that charge, but pleaded guilty to manslaughter. He also pleaded guilty to hit and run.

According to the agreed statement of facts, Getschel was partying and drinking at Cook County Saloon that night with his friend and girlfriend. Getschel and his friend left the bar after fighting with other patrons.

Getschel drove away with his friend and girlfriend in his truck. The truck came up behind Jimmo's Jeep at Whyte Avenue and 101st Street and followed the Jeep into the parking lot of H2O Lounge.

Jimmo and his fiancée, Roxie Reese, were inside the Jeep and felt the truck was driving aggressively. 

Jimmo parked his Jeep and walked up to the driver's door of the truck. He slapped the window and yelled at Getschel and his friend, challenging them to a fight. Jimmo and Getschel did not know each other.

After arguing, Jimmo walked back to the Jeep but turned around when he heard someone shout something from the truck.

Getschel then accelerated the truck and steered it toward the driver's side of the Jeep. It went over two concrete parking curbs before striking Jimmo and dragging him out front of the Jeep.

Knowing he had hit Jimmo, Getschel then quickly drove the truck out of the parking lot and onto Whyte Avenue, almost hitting another vehicle in the process, according to the agreed statement of facts.

Ryan Jimmo works out at a gym in Calgary in 2012. Jimmo was killed in a hit and run in Edmonton in July 2016. (The Canadian Press)

'He fought really hard, Ryan did, for his life'

It was around 2:10 a.m. at this point. Jimmo was lying on the ground, conscious but seriously injured. Bystanders called 911. Police arrived and provided first aid until paramedics arrived minutes later.

"I was telling him I love him and to fight. And he fought really hard, Ryan did, for his life," Reece told CBC News in an interview after his death.

Jimmo was taken to hospital by ambulance, where he died in the emergency room at around 2:45 a.m.

Getschel dropped off his passengers that morning before hiding his truck in Mill Creek Ravine. He took a taxi home, told a family member his truck was stolen, and went to bed.

Later that morning, he retrieved his truck and backed it into his driveway. He reported his licence plate as stolen and replaced it with a new one.

On June 27, he travelled to Fort McMurray and back for work. Police watched his home until he returned that night.

Through family members, Getschel told police he would be turning himself in. Early in the morning on June 28, he went to Edmonton police headquarters and was placed under arrest.

An autopsy was done that day on Jimmo, and it was found he died of multiple blunt force and injuries consistent with being run over by a vehicle.

Getschel was charged with second-degree murder, criminal negligence causing death, dangerous operation of a motor vehicle causing death, and failing to stop at the scene of an accident involving death​.

During a summary disposition on Monday, he pleaded to the lesser charge of manslaughter and to hit and run.

Getschel's lawyer Peter Royal told the court his client has no criminal record and 19 character references were submitted.

When Justice Paul Belzil left the courtroom, Getschel began crying in the prisoner's box.

He will be sentenced on Dec. 3.

Fiancée Roxie Reece said Jimmo fought hard to live after he was hit by the truck. (Supplied)

With files from Janice Johnston