Cuyahoga County

Shamar Smiley Sentenced to 30 Years in Prison for 9-Month Crime Spree, Including Shooting of CWRU Student



CLEVELAND – Cuyahoga County Prosecutor Michael C. O’Malley announced that Shamar Smiley, 19, was sentenced to 30 years in prison for four cases that occurred between March 8, 2018 and November 3, 2018.

“Smiley nearly killed one victim and endangered the lives of many others during his crime spree,” said Prosecutor O’Malley.  “Our thoughts remain with the victim who is still recovering both physically and mentally from this senseless crime.”

On March 8, 2018, Smiley and a male accomplice approached a 66-year-old victim in a Lakewood restaurant parking lot near W. 117 St and Franklin Boulevard.  The victim was brushing snow off his car after closing the restaurant he owned when Smiley and the accomplice stole his vehicle and drove off.  The vehicle was found the following day by the Cleveland Police Department.  DNA samples taken from the vehicle traced to Smiley. 

On October 6, 2018, Smiley escaped from Community Based Correctional Facility (CBCF) in Cleveland.  Surveillance video showed Smiley and co-defendant Jason Vaughn, 44, ram through an exterior door and run away.  Smiley was required to complete a six-month program at CBCF for two prior cases.  

On October 8, 2018, Smiley broke into his mother’s Cleveland residence near Harvard Ave and Lee Rd while she was away from the home.  He smashed a side door window and stole healthcare products from the home before fleeing the scene as police arrived.  Fingerprints found on the exterior windowpane matched to Smiley.  

On November 3, 2018, Smiley and Javon Williams, 19, approached a 20-year-old student in a parking lot on the campus of Case Western Reserve University (CWRU) and demanded his car keys.  While the victim was attempting to get his keys, Smiley shot him in the stomach and both defendants ran away.  The victim was transported to the hospital and required emergency surgery.  The victim has had to undergo several additional surgeries and is still recovering.

CWRU Police, University Circle Police (UCPD), and Cleveland Police responded to the scene and arrested Williams in a parking lot near E. 120 St. and Coltman Road.  After leading UCPD officers on a foot pursuit, officers located Smiley in a nearby field and ordered him out of a ditch.  Smiley threatened and shot at officers multiple times. Officers returned fire and administered first aid until EMS arrived and transported Smiley to a hospital for treatment, where was subsequently arrested.

Williams pled guilty to Aggravated Robbery and Felonious Assault.  Smiley pled guilty to the following charges related to the 4 incidents:

1 count of Attempted Murder (with 1 and 3-year Firearm Specifications)
2 counts of Aggravated Robbery (with 1 and 3-year Firearm Specifications)
5 counts of Felonious Assault (with 1 and 3-year Firearm Specifications)
1 count of Robbery
1 count of Burglary 
1 count of Theft
1 count of Criminal Damaging or Endangering
1 count of Escape

The investigation was conducted by Cleveland Police, University Circle Police, CWRU Police, Ohio Bureau of Criminal Investigation, Cuyahoga County Medical Examiner’s Office, Lakewood Police, and Cuyahoga County Sheriff’s Office.

Smiley was sentenced to 30 years in prison and Williams was sentenced to a 13-year prison term.