A southern New Jersey woman who ordered the abduction and killing of a teenage mother during a robbery in Atlantic City has been sentenced to 35 years in prison.
Shamerria Smith also must pay more than $1.5 million in restitution to Nadirah Ruffin's family under the sentence imposed Tuesday. Smith had pleaded guilty to using a firearm in furtherance of a crime of violence.
Prosecutors say Smith planned to rob a man who brutally beat her cousin in March 2011. Ruffin happened to be at the home when the robbery occurred.
When Ruffin recognized Smith's voice, prosecutors say she was taken from the home at gunpoint and eventually driven to the Schuylkill River in Philadelphia, where she was shot in the head.
Smith ordered another robber to shoot Ruffin, saying she couldn't do it because she also was a mother.
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The Press of Atlantic City reports that Ruffin's now-7-year-old son, Jahlil, often visits her grave.
"I miss my mom so bad,'' the boy wrote in a letter that Assistant U.S. Attorney Jason Richardson read from in court. "I want to see her and kiss her on her cheek when I go to sleep.''
The man who shot Ruffin and another man who was at the scene have also pleaded guilty in the case. They are due to be sentenced July 9.