A city man convicted on a weapons charge from a 2010 shooting on Eastern Avenue was sentenced Friday to 12 years in state prison.
Tasheem Bell, 22, who lived on Manhattan Street, was convicted in August of second-degree criminal possession of a weapon and other charges and faced a maximum of 15 years in state prison.
Bell was acquitted of a more serious first-degree assault count, which carried a maximum sentence of 25 years in prison. The jury instead convicted Bell on a misdemeanor assault count. Acting Schenectady County Court Judge Frank P. Milano imposed the 12-year sentence after prosecutor Amy Monahan argued for the maximum. Monahan said there was a real possibility that people could have been killed by Bell’s actions.
“It’s a miracle that didn’t happen here,” she told Milano.
Bell was accused of seriously injuring 18-year-old Chadaejzhia Tulloch, who was shot in the right calf in the incident on Sept. 6, 2010. Five shell casings were found at the scene.
The shooting stemmed from a dispute earlier in the day where Bell took marijuana from a woman and later punched her in the face, prosecutors said.
Monahan argued in her opening statement that when the dispute escalated and Bell was supposed to meet up for a fistfight later with the woman’s brother or boyfriend, Bell instead brought a gun. Tulloch taunted him and he fired, hitting her in the calf.
Bell’s attorney, Michael Mansion, argued that Monahan’s comments were inflammatory and asked Milano to disregard them. Bell was acquitted of the first-degree assault count, Mansion pointed out.
Mansion also asked Milano to consider that Bell has a young son, about to turn 1, and he wants to be there to raise him.
Bell maintained his innocence.
“That’s why I took the trial all the way, to prove my innocence,” Bell said.
Bell also referred to his son, saying he wanted to be a part of his life and make something of himself.
Milano said he understood Bell disagreed with the jury’s verdict and said that Bell had every right to appeal.
The verdict, the judge said, was legally supported by the evidence presented.
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