After being sentenced on Thursday, the last defendant found guilty of robbing rapper Safaree Samuels with a gun in the parking lot of his opulent Fort Lee apartment building now goes to state prison.
Shawn Harewood, Samuels’ childhood friend, was convicted of robbery, eluding and resisting arrest by a jury in July. However, he was acquitted of counts related to using weapons, conspiring to conduct robbery, and robbing Samuels’ companion.
The prosecution painted Harewood as the mastermind of the armed heist that cost Samuels $180,000 in jewelry, emphasizing that Harewood lied to the jury about his involvement by claiming he was under the influence of alcohol when he took the witness stand.
The verdict, according to Harewood’s attorney Brian Neary, refuted the government’s claim that Harewood was the robbery’s mastermind. Joe Torre and Meg Kilzy, the assistant prosecutors for Bergen County, were successful in arguing that the robbery and eluding were separate offenses that had different victims.
Harewood was given an 18-year prison term by Judge Gary Wilcox, who agreed with the prosecution that Harewood’s sentences should be served consecutively rather than simultaneously. The offences were distinct even if they occurred quickly after one another, according to the judge.
Wilcox received the maximum sentence of 10 years for evading capture; however, he only received eight years on the robbery charge rather than the whole 10.