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Boy, 16, is sentenced to nine years to life for killing Barnard College student Tessa Majors

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A teen who pleaded guilty to his role in the stabbing murder of Barnard College student Tessa Majors has been sentenced to serve nine years to life in prison.

Luchiano Lewis, 16, was sentenced on Thursday in Manhattan criminal court by Justice Robert Mandelbaum, who slammed him for his lack of remorse in the shocking case. 

‘The defendant has demonstrated in the year and a half since this incident this is not an aberration,’ the judge said, according to WNBC-TV. ‘The defendant has learned no lessons from his experience in this case.’ 

Lewis was charged as an adult despite being 14 at the time of the murder, and last month pleaded guilty to second-degree murder and first-degree robbery in a deal with prosecutors.

Luchiano Lewis, 16, (seen last month) was sentenced on Thursday in Manhattan criminal court for the murder of Barnard College student Tessa Majors

Luchiano Lewis, 16, (seen last month) was sentenced on Thursday in Manhattan criminal court for the murder of Barnard College student Tessa Majors

Lewis was sentenced to serve nine years to life in prison for his role in the slaying of Majors, who was stabbed to death during a botched robbery in Morningside Park

Lewis was sentenced to serve nine years to life in prison for his role in the slaying of Majors, who was stabbed to death during a botched robbery in Morningside Park

Tessa's father Inman Majorswalks into Manhattan Supreme Court for the sentencing of Luchiano Lewis on Thursday

Tessa’s father Inman Majorswalks into Manhattan Supreme Court for the sentencing of Luchiano Lewis on Thursday

Views of the crime scene in Morningside Park four days after Tessa Majors, a Barnard freshman, was murdered, as seen on December 15, 2019 in New York City

Views of the crime scene in Morningside Park four days after Tessa Majors, a Barnard freshman, was murdered, as seen on December 15, 2019 in New York City

Lewis was also sentenced to 40 months to 12 years on the robbery count. It is unclear if the sentences will be served concurrently or consecutively. 

He was one of three charged in the murder of Majors, who was stabbed multiple times during the botched mugging on December 11, 2019 in Morningside Park, which is near the Manhattan campuses of Barnard College and Columbia University. 

The alleged knifeman Rashaun Weaver has pleaded not guilty and is also charged as an adult. The third boy present for Majors’ killing pleaded guilty to robbery last June was sentenced to 18 months behind bars, the max for a juvenile.

During Thursday’s sentencing, Majors’ family submitted an victim impact statement saying that ‘the hopes and dreams of our daughter Tessa came to an end’ on the day of her murder.

‘Our hearts ache as we watch Tessa’s friends return to school, perform at concerts, start new jobs, and experience things our family never will,’ the family said. ‘Murder shouldn’t be normalized or rationalized.’

In a statement during sentencing, Lewis said that he and his cronies went to Morningside Park looking for someone to rob. At first they tried to go after a man, but he was walking too fast for them to keep up.

When Majors walked by, she was looking down at her phone, and Lewis and Weaver ran up behind her, kicking her in the back and demanding she hand over her phone and money, according to Lewis.

Rashaun Weaver

Luchiano Lewis

Rashaun Weaver (left) is accused of fatally stabbing her and Luchiano Lewis (right) is accused of holding her back while he did it. They were both charged as adults and Weaver is awaiting trial while Lewis was charged with second-degree murder and robbery

Majors died following a stabbing on these steps in Morningside Park in December 2019

Majors died following a stabbing on these steps in Morningside Park in December 2019

The murder occurred just steps from the Columbia campus, not far from Barnard

The murder occurred just steps from the Columbia campus, not far from Barnard

‘Are you seriously trying to rob me?’ Majors asked the trio, according to Lewis, who said that he stood by and watched, warning of potential witnesses, as Weaver wrestled the girl to the ground. 

Lewis said that he knew Weaver had a knife and saw feathers flying from Majors’ down jacket, but wasn’t sure exactly when in the scuffle the stabbing occurred. 

Lewis said he had not realized Majors was dead until the next day, according to the New York Post. 

Lewis cooperated with Manhattan prosecutors against the main suspect, 16-year-old co-defendant Weaver, who is accused of stabbing Majors and faces the same counts as Lewis. Weaver pleaded not guilty and has not yet stood trial.

Prosecutors allege that Weaver, Lewis and Davis were looking to mug someone when they went to Morningside park, where they spotted Majors, on December 11th.

Majors yelled for help and attempted to fight off the three boys while Lewis allegedly held her in a headlock position. 

Lewis maintains his stance on Weaver being the one who stabbed Majors after seeing feathers in her down coat fly into the air, according to court papers.

Majors collapsed on a flight of stairs at street level after she was stabbed. She was pronounced dead at a hospital. 

Davis said he handed Weaver the knife used to kill Majors upon their arrival at the park, well before they noticed her, according to his videotaped confession.

Before his sentencing, he told the judge: ‘I went into Morningside Park in Manhattan with Rashaun and Lucci.

'Are you seriously trying to rob me?' Majors asked the trio, according to Lewis, who said that he stood by and watched as an accomplice stabbed her

‘Are you seriously trying to rob me?’ Majors asked the trio, according to Lewis, who said that he stood by and watched as an accomplice stabbed her

The charges come nearly two months after the gruesome slaying shocked New York City. Pictured: NYPD Scuba team searched Morningside Park for evidence involving the stabbing death of Tessa Majors in December 2019

The charges come nearly two months after the gruesome slaying shocked New York City. Pictured: NYPD Scuba team searched Morningside Park for evidence involving the stabbing death of Tessa Majors in December 2019

‘We went to the park planning to rob someone. In the park, one of my friends dropped a knife. I picked up the knife and handed it to Rashaun.’ 

In September of last year, police said Weaver allegedly confessed to the brutal murder in a wire-tapped phone conversation with his father Clifford Weaver, who was behind bars upstate at the time on a parole violation. 

Weaver has also been charged for another indictment in a separate violent robbery that happened four days before Majors’ death.  

‘The defendant stated in substance that he was in the park and tried to take the girl’s phone and ‘she was hanging onto her phone’ and that he hit her with a knife,’ court papers revealed, describing the conversation.   

The elder Weaver has a long history of convictions on robbery and drug charges, and was incarcerated at Mohawk Correctional Facility at the time of the phone call. 

Last September, a grand jury unsealed an indictment against Weaver in a separate violent robbery, which police say he committed while on the run from cops as a suspect in Majors’ murder.

According to the indictment, Weaver and his associate Keith Bonds, 14, beat and robbed a man on Valentine’s Day in East Harlem.

The alleged victim was lured to 65 East 112th Street with the offer to buy a cellphone from Bonds, but was instead viciously beaten and robbed, according to the indictment.

Weaver, wearing a black ski mask, distracted the victim by asking him if he had any weed, before Weaver, Bonds, and two unidentified accomplices jumped the man and robbed him of $130, his cellphone and his shoes, prosecutors say,

At the time, he had already been questioned by police in Majors’ death but released without charges.   

Weaver is being held without bail in a juvenile facility. He is next due in court on November 12 for a pre-trial conference.    



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