Nico Bowers will spend at least another year and a half in prison for helping the actual murderer cover up the crime.
Wake County prosecutor Doug Faucette told a judge that Bowers, 23, picked up Travis Sherman at the back door of the restaurant on the night of Jan. 8, 2010, after Sherman beat 23-year-old Kenneth Ring with a baseball bat.
"At WakeMed, Kenny Ring is diagnosed with life-threatening multiple skull fractures. By that Saturday afternoon, Kenny is declared brain dead, though he's kept sentient for organ harvest purposes," said Faucette in court.
Keeping Ring alive allowed his family to donate most of his organs - most notably his heart - which saved the life of another man.
Although Bowers pleaded guilty to accessory after the fact of murder Friday, his attorney told the judge he did not wish for Ring to be killed.
"Nico and Kenny were friends. They worked together. They were buddies. They hung out together," said David Brannon. "Nico would not have put his friend in that situation, in that kind of danger."
But Ring's father, who couldn't attend Friday's hearing, told ABC11 that he believes Bowers helped plan the crime.
"Nico delivered him there. Nico drove him around all night. He used Nico's bat in the crime. Nico took him from the store after the crime, prior to calling 911," said Dan Ring.
Still, Ring said he and his family are relieved to know that the two men he believes are primarily responsible for his son's death are now behind bars.
Travis Sherman was convicted of first-degree murder earlier this year and sentenced to life without parole.