Cardell Hayes Sentenced To 25 Years In Will Smith Shooting

Cardell Hayes, the man who shot and killed former Saints player Will Smith and wounded his wife in a road rage incident, was sentenced to 25 years for manslaughter on Thursday.

Smith’s widow, Raquel Smith, is “extremely disappointed” with the leniency of the sentence considering the pain and loss her family has suffered.

Via ABC News:

Cardell Hayes faced up to 60 years if given consecutive maximum terms for manslaughter and attempted manslaughter, as prosecutors had urged. Instead, Judge Camille Buras gave him 15 years for shooting Racquel Smith in the legs, to be served at the same time.

Hayes, 29, will get a year of credit for the time he’s already served since shooting one of the city’s sports heroes in April 2016. State law requires him to serve 85 percent of the sentence before becoming eligible for good-behavior release, meaning he could be freed in roughly 20 years.

“If he was sentenced to 60 years, he probably could have died in jail. At least with 25 he has the opportunity to be reunited with his family,” Hayes’ lawyer, John Fuller, said outside court.

Racquel Smith said she is “extremely disappointed” at what she called the leniency of the sentence, given the violence of the crime and her family’s pain and loss.

“This ordeal has been a nightmare for me and my family. There are no winners here today,” her statement said. She praised prosecutors and police, and said she and their three children, Willie, Lisa and Wynter, will carry on Smith’s legacy of love for his community.

“I will continue to shine my light for my Superman,” she said.

Such a sad situation all the way around.

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