Judge Increases Sentence For Schuyler Street Drive-By Shooter
Utica, NY (WIBX) - A Utica man who admitted to firing several rounds at another vehicle in a drive-by shooting in the city will spend the next ten years in prison.
Kwamae Smith pleaded guilty to reckless endangerment and criminal possession of a weapon in connection with the drive-by last summer on Schuyler Street that nearly killed or injured several innocent bystanders, inlcuding children, prosecutor Kurt Hameline said.
"Fortunately, no one was shot. But, he certainly endangered their lives, and had possession of an illegal handgun," Hameline said.
Hameline said Smith had indicated the shooting was retaliation for a 'prior incident'.
"There were children actually in the car [that was hit with bullets] and several other civilans who were not involved in the prior incident that were either on the porch, or standing near the porch when [Smith] opened fire," Hameline said.
Smith was scheduled to be sentenced to six years in prison, but several run-ins with law enforcement since then prompted Judge Barry Donalty to increase that sentence to ten years, Hameline said.
Those other run-ins included resisting arrest and spitting the face of a police officer, and failing to show up in court to respond to the charges.
Responding to that allegation in court today, Smith said the officer slammed him to the ground on the ice. Smith says he told the officer he was going to sue him, and later when a UPD sergeant arrived on the scene, the sergeant punched Smith in the face, Smith said.
Also, Smith failed to show up in court in Vernon to respond to a harassment charge, Hameline said.