Cardell Hayes sentencing set for April

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Cardell Hayes

NEW ORLEANS – The man convicted of killing former New Orleans Saint Will Smith and injuring his wife, Racquel, will learn his fate April 19.

A judge on Thursday set a sentencing date for Cardell Hayes. It’s the second time his sentencing has been delayed.

A jury convicted Hayes of manslaughter and attempted manslaughter Dec. 11 after six days of emotional testimony from more than 20 witnesses.

Hayes was charged with second-degree murder and attempted second-degree murder, but a jury handed down a lesser conviction.

The shooting happened in early April 2016 when Smith, his wife and a few of their friends were leaving a restaurant in the Garden District. Video shows Smith’s Mercedes bumping the back of Hayes’ Hummer on Magazine Street, prompting Hayes to follow Smith’s vehicle and smash into its rear.

An altercation ensued, and Hayes ultimately shot Smith seven times in the back and once in the side. Hayes shot Racquel twice in the leg.

Will Smith photo courtesy Getty Images

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