Toledo man sentenced for shooting his girlfriend in the back of the head

Published: Sep. 7, 2022 at 7:24 PM EDT|Updated: Sep. 7, 2022 at 7:27 PM EDT
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TOLEDO, Ohio (WTVG) - A Toledo man was sentenced to 11 to 15 years Wednesday for shooting and injuring his girlfriend.

The victim survived, yet her family said she’s now a shell of her former self.

In March, Dajuan Smith shot Shalena Martinez-Featchurs in the back of the head. After shooting her, her family said he left her for dead in a hotel room. Now the victim’s family says she remains in a vegetative state.

Martinez-Featchurs’ mother, Pauline Featchurs, was able to give a victim impact statement at the sentencing. She talked about how her daughter trusted Smith with her life and how her four kids are left with nothing but memories of the way their mom used to be.

“It’s like taking a perfect sheet of paper and crinkling it up and never being able to get the wrinkles out,” said Pauline.

The courtroom was full of emotion as Martinez-Featchurs’ loved ones tearfully watched Smith be sentenced. Pauline said Smith’s sentence is “not long enough,” and she’s angry.

“He should have got longer than that. That’s a slap on the wrist, but if that’s what Ohio laws say, then I guess they want me to be happy but I’m not,” Pauline said.

Pauline described what life is like now for the people who love her daughter.

“It’s like a beautiful, sunny day, not too hot, not too cold, and all of a sudden a windstorm comes in and breaks the branches and the trees and uproots the flowers,” said the victim’s mother. “We’re a desert when we used to be a beautiful valley.”

The Martinez-Featchurs’ family united at the sentencing, all wearing the same color.

“Orange is her favorite color, and it just so happens he’ll wear orange the rest of his life in remembrance of what he’s done,” said Pauline.

Pauline hopes that people can learn from her daughter’s story.

“I’m praying that women won’t be afraid to speak out. Domestic violence is real. Don’t end up like my daughter and have four children that have nothing but tears every day and every night for the rest of their life.”

If you are in an abusive situation and need help, you can call the National Domestic Violence Hotline at 800-799-7233.

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