The second and final man to admit his role in the 2002 watershed killing of Leonder Goodwin was sentenced today to 21 years-to-life in state prison.
Samuel “Buzzy” McLean pleaded guilty in November to second-degree murder in connection with the 16-year-old Goodwin’s death.
Prosecutors said McLean was one of three to open fire at Goodwin at the corner of Emmett and Steuben streets. Goodwin was hit in the back as he fled and killed. The sentencing happened just over six years after Goodwin was killed.
“The victim was 16 years old, unarmed and outnumbered,” prosecutor Amy Burock said this afternoon. “He was fighting for his life and he was shot in the back.”
Goodwin’s killing sparked much change on Hamilton Hill. It has been called the spark behind the Emmett Street Project, which evolved into the current Hamilton Hill and Vale Neighborhood Weed and Seed crime-fighting initiative. It also resulted in a call for surveillance cameras, a network that now claims 18 cameras, with plans for more.
McLean’s only surviving co-defendant Antoan Baker was sentenced in November to 15-years-to-life. A third suspect, Kendall “Kendu” Toxey was never charged. He fell to his death in 2005.
McLean, Baker, Toxey and one other person borrowed McLean‘s girlfriend’s Honda Prelude Jan. 27, 2002, and drove to the area of Tony’s Market at Emmett and Steuben streets to rob Goodwin of jewelry. The three men got out of the car, advancing toward Goodwin and displaying weapons.
When Goodwin attempted to run, they opened fire. Thirteen shell casings were found on the scene. The fatal shot hit Goodwin in the back, piercing his heart.
Schenectady County District Attorney Robert Carney credited the work of Schenectady Police detectives Jack Sims and Mike Brown with keeping the old case alive and bringing it to a conclusion.
McLean’s Schenectady sentence also won’t begin running until he finishes his current sentence. He is serving 12 years on an Albany County robbery conviction.
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