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Family grieves after daughters' killer gets plea deal

Ismael Pierce entered a plea in exchange for a 20-year sentence for killing his ex-girlfriend after a fight.
Britton Loyden with her son.Provided

The family of a Vineland mother murdered by her estranged boyfriend in 2012 while her son was in the house embraced each other outside a New Jersey courthouse Thursday after her killer received a plea deal that will see him serve up to 20 years.

Ismael Pierce pleaded guilty to the aggravated manslaughter of Britton Loyden, 23, in front of a judge at the Cumberland County courthouse in Bridgeton, New Jersey. In return for dropping the charge of first degree murder, he'll serve a 20-year sentence.

Britton's sister Jillian Loyden, a retired goalie who was on the U.S. Women's Olympic team in 2012, wept in court as Pierce confessed to strangling her sister to death on Feb. 10, 2012 inside her Vineland home after the two had an argument.

While the former goal keeper was too upset to speak outside court, Loyden's mother, Tracy Frees, said the family doesn't understand why Pierce won't get a higher charge.

"I hope he rots," she said. "There's no forgiveness here."

Britton, 23, and Pierce had a son, Madden, but had broken up when he turned up at the home that fateful day.

In response to questions from his lawyer, he admitted that he put Britton in a chokehold from behind and didn't stop until she wasn't breathing. He also said he did not call 911.

The murder was not discovered until 24 hours later, after Britton was reported missing, when police broke down the door and discoveredBritton'sbody and their son.

Just hours after Britton was reported missing, Pierce wrote on his Twitter account, "BITCH YOU GOT 1000 FACES....TRY BEING FAITHFUL TO ONE!!!"

Hours later, he tweeted, "is the risk....worth the reward....." and on the day Britton's body was discovered, tweeted, "Tryin to remain relaxed..."

In response to her sister's murder, Jillian has founded an anti-domestic violence organization .

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