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‘No Minor Actors’: Family Of Slain Barnard Student Tessa Majors Criticizes Sentence For Teen Involved In Her Death
The family of Tessa Majors is unhappy that a 14-year-old boy who pleaded guilty to first-degree robbery in her death, wasn't charged with murder.
The family of slain Barnard freshman Tessa Majors is criticizing the sentence of one of the teens connected to her alleged fatal stabbing in a New York City park.
The 14-year-old boy — whose identity isn’t being revealed because of his age — was sentenced Monday to up to 18 months in a juvenile detention center following a guilty plea to first-degree robbery earlier this month. The boy, who was 13 at the time of Majors' killing, admitted to playing a role in the attack that led to Majors’ death.
Majors, 18, was walking in Morningside Park in Manhattan in December when she was robbed and fatally stabbed, allegedly by a group of three teenage boys. The other two teens — Rashaun Weaver and Luchiano “Lucci” Lewis — have been charged as adults and both face second-degree murder and robbery charges. Both were 14 at the time of the killing and have pleaded not guilty.
Majors’ family expressed their disapproval of the sentence for the unnamed teen in court this week.
“There are no minor actors in the murder of Tess Majors,” they said in a statement, which also criticized language in the proceedings that they said depicted Major’s murder as unintentional, according to The New York Times.
“Tess Majors did not die in an accident,” the family stated.
In the family’s remarks, delivered by lawyer Rachel Glantz during the juvenile's sentencing, they also expressed dissatisfaction that the defendant was able to dodge murder charges.
“These hearings have amplified our pain,” the family said.
While Judge Carol Goldstein of Family Court in Manhattan acknowledged the pain of the Majors family, she also noted that the teen boy had “never touched” Majors. He also has no previous arrests. While he serves his sentence, he will undergo mental health counseling and continue his education, according to The New York Times.
The teen’s lawyer, Neville Mitchell, told the judge on Monday that his client was “heartbroken” and feels remorse for Majors’ death.
“Our client is a child,” Mitchell said.
The defendant described earlier this month how he and his two alleged co-conspirators went to the park that day to rob people.