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Father Killed In Shooting Remembered As 'Peacemaker' At Teen's Sentencing

Trevon Major.
Trevon Major. Photo Credit: Westchester County District Attorney's Office

A tearful daughter whose father was shot and killed by a Westchester County teenager was remembered as a “peacemaker” and man “with a heart as big as the world” as the teen was sentenced to prison time on Wednesday.

Trevon Major, 16, was sentenced in Westchester County Court on Wednesday to 15 years in prison for his role in the fatal shooting of Joseph Smith III in the hallway of a Greenburgh apartment building on Aug. 17 last year.

In court on Wednesday, Smith’s family read statements lamenting the impact of the incident on their family.

“We will never get back the time we lost with him and I ask the court to think about the pain and suffering of our family,” his daughter said.

Smith’s fiancé also read an impact statement saying, “Trevon, you took the love of my life away from me.” She added, “Joseph and I were raising three foster kids together. Joseph was the only father they knew.”

At approximately 7:30 p.m. on the date of the fatal shooting, int he parking lot of a Manhattan Avenue apartment complex where Major lived, he, his older brother Vance Major and co-defendant Timothy Whitney robbed a man. While in the vestibule of the building, the robbery victim argued with Vance Major and Whitney about getting his property back, at which point Trevon Major came downstairs from his apartment and threatened the robbery victim with a gun.

The robbery victim’s mother came from a nearby apartment, “pleading with Trevon Major not to shoot her son.” The robbery victim was able to leave the area and return home in a nearby building. Following the incident, Smith, who was the fiancé of the victim’s mother, went to the apartment of the Majors, knocked on the door, at which point Trevon Major opened the door and shot him once in the chest as he stood in the hallway.

A nearby neighbor who heard the shot alerted police, who responded and found a blood trail from the hallway outside the Majors’ apartment down to a nearby stairwell, where Smith was found laying on the floor. He was subsequently transported to Westchester Medical Center, where he was pronounced dead.

The police investigation led to the arrests of all three men involved in the robbery and shooting. Trevon Major pleaded guilty to first-degree manslaughter and criminal possession of a weapon earlier this year. The cases against Vance Major and Whitney are still pending.

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