PHILADELPHIA (CBS) — A federal judge has sentenced the defendant who was behind the 2015 botched robbery of a Jewelers Row store that resulted in a terrifying abduction of a shop clerk. A second man was already sentenced, and a third man who pleaded and cooperated, will be sentenced later this month.
Assistant U.S. Attorney Jeanine Linehan says it was an “unusually cruel, barbaric” kidnapping last April.
‘The government believed if ever there was a case to warrant the most serious sentence,” Linehan said. “This would be it.”
The victim, a 53-year old woman who worked at National Watch & Diamond Exchange at 8th and Chestnut Streets, was abducted in a parking garage, tased, beaten, gagged, and shackled in a van, and then dumped in a cemetery in Darby.
“During the entire two hours plus of her captivity, she was thinking of more than 50-ways in which she would die at their hands,’ Linehan said.
Judge Harvey Bartle called it, “the most heinous crime he’s seen in his 25-years on the bench,” as he sentenced Salahudin Shaheed to more than 30-years, 365-months in prison. It was the high end of the sentencing guideline range.
Although the 35-year old Shaheed pleaded guilty two days into his trial last fall, he later tried to withdraw the plea, but the judge denied that request.
His cousin, Basil Buie also pleaded guilty last October, and was sentenced last month to 15-years in prison. A third man involved in the attempted robbery and abduction, Khayree Gay, who pleaded guilty, cooperated, and was about to testify at trial, will be sentenced later this month.
The victim suffered permanent injuries, including partial vision and memory loss. At the sentencing hearing, her husband read her victim impact statement.