Buffalo Man Sentenced for Fatal Stabbing

Modified: February 23, 2018 12:28pm


Erie County District Attorney John J. Flynn announces that 47- year-old Hillard Smith of Buffalo has been sentenced by State Supreme Court Justice William Boller to 27 2/3 to 33 years in prison. 

On April 12, 2017, the defendant broke into his former girlfriend’s home on North Division Street. Smith attacked her boyfriend, 42-year-old Justin Johnson of Buffalo, with a knife. Johnson was taken to ECMC where he died of his injuries five days later.

A jury convicted Smith on one count of Manslaughter in the First Degree, one count of Burglary in the First Degree, one count of Assault in the Third Degree, two counts of Menacing in the Second Degree, two counts of Criminal Possession of a Weapon in the Third Degree and two counts of Criminal Contempt in the First Degree.

DA Flynn commends Buffalo Police Homicide Detectives Brendan Keifer, Patricia Wrest, James Kaska and Carl Lundin.

Assistant District Attorney John Patrick Feroleto of the DA’s Homicide Bureau and Assistant District Attorney Stephen Earnhart of the Domestic Violence Bureau prosecuted the case.