|| ST. THOMAS, V.I. – A woman who admitted to beating and severely wounding a young girl has been sentenced to three years’ imprisonment.
LaToya Nicole Smith, who pleaded guilty to third-degree assault stemming from an Aug. 2, 2012 fight during which the victim was slashed about the body with a broken bottle, on Friday faced V.I. Superior Court Judge Kathleen Mackay for sentencing.
During the hearing, the victim’s mother told the court that since the incident, her daughter has become very depressed because of the scars on her face and other parts of her body.
In the plea agreement, Attorney General Claude Earl Walker recommended that Smith serve a three-year prison term and pay restitution to the victim. In his allocution at the hearing, Assistant Attorney General Eugene Connor asked that the terms of the plea agreement be upheld.
Judge Mackay, who characterized the case as a “tragedy,” handed Smith a three-year prison sentence with all but six months suspended and ruled that Smith will be allowed to serve the six-month prison term two days per week until it is completed. After serving her prison sentence, Judge Mackay ordered that Smith enroll and complete anger management classes and that she be placed on two-and-a-half years’ probation.
An affidavit written by police detective Sehkera Tyson stated that on Aug. 2, 2012 at about 5 p.m., police responded to reports of a fight among several girls at the Sky High Club.
Based on eyewitnesses’ reports, police learned that a group of boys and girls were standing outside the club, waiting for a ride. They were all getting into the car when Smith approached one of the girls and struck her with her fist and a fight ensued. The girl tried to run, but Smith pursued her, picked up a bottle, broke it and repeatedly slashed the girl about her face and body. When the others intervened in the fight, Smith also wounded them with the broken bottle, according to Tyson’s affidavit.
As a result, the three victims were taken to Schneider hospital. One received more than 100 sutures to her face, several staples in her head and several staples in her stomach, according to Tyson. Another of the victims received multiple stitches to her arm, Tyson wrote. The third victim also received multiple stitches to her arm, according to Tyson.
The victims viewed a photo array and positively identified Smith as their attacker, according to Tyson.