Former band member sentenced

Leonard Stevenson is sentenced to life without parole for the 2017 death of Billy Smiley Jr.

A Washington County man is sentenced to life in prison for killing his band leader.

District Attorney Dewayne Richardson said Thursday that Leonard Stevenson was found guilty of capital murder in the death of Billy Smiley Jr.

Stevenson is a former Greenville High School football player and was a musician in Smiley's band, Billy Smiley and the Young Guns.

The crime happened in February 2017, shortly after the band played a gig. Investigators found that Smiley had been stabbed at his home, and robbed.

The three-day trial was held at the Washington County Convention Center, due to Covid-19 safety measures.

Circuit Court Judge Ashley Hines sentenced Stevenson to life without parole.

Stevenson is also charged in connection with two other homicides. Those cases remain pending.

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