PORTLAND — A 22-year-old South Portland man is expected to plead guilty to manslaughter Friday for a car crash that killed his friend last fall.

Yannick Mulongo was allegedly drunk and behind the wheel of a 2001 Ford Mustang in the early morning of Sept. 20 when he lost control of the car on Brighton Avenue in Portland, crossed the center line and struck an oncoming car.

Guy Kitoko, 18, a senior student and athlete at Deering High School, was riding with Mulongo in the front passenger seat. Kitoko died instantly.

Mulongo’s lawyer, Neale Duffett, said Tuesday his client intends to plead guilty to manslaughter at a hearing scheduled for Friday at Cumberland County Superior Court.

The prosecutor, Deputy District Attorney Meg Elam, could not be reached for comment.

Mulongo and Kitoko had been at a birthday party for a mutual friend on the night of the crash. Several other people, including the driver of the second vehicle, were injured.

Mulongo was charged with manslaughter, four counts of aggravated assault, aggravated drunken driving, reckless conduct with a dangerous weapon, theft for unauthorized use of a motor vehicle, criminal speeding and operating without a license.

According to a police affidavit filed in the case, Mulongo had a blood-alcohol content of 0.08 percent, exactly the legal limit for driving under the influence in Maine. His vehicle was traveling an estimated 76 mph in the 35-mph zone moments before the crash occurred, the affidavit said.

The past year has been a tragic one for the Mulongo family, which came to the United States to escape the civil war in the Democratic Republic of the Congo, formerly known as Zaire. On Feb. 10, about five months after the fatal accident, Mulongo’s brother was shot and killed as he walked out of an apartment building in Portland’s Parkside neighborhood. Serge Mulongo was 24 years old.

An acquaintance of Serge Mulongo, 24-year-old Daudoit Butsitsi, has been charged in the case and remains in custody without bail at the Cumberland County Jail. He is accused of shooting Serge Mulongo six times at close range as Mulongo left the building at Park Avenue and Weymouth streets.

Another man, 21-year-old Moses Okot, has been charged with a lesser crime of felony murder. He is accused of driving the getaway car and providing latex gloves that Butsitsi used in the shooting. Okot is being held on $150,000 bail.

 

Staff Writer Trevor Maxwell can be contacted at 791-6451 or at: [email protected]