Hakim Glover - who helped his cousin John Lewis flee Philadelphia after the Oct. 31, 2007 slaying of Police Officer Chuck Cassidy - was sentenced to probation today by a Philadelphia judge who praised his decision to plead guilty and testify against Lewis.
"We live in a community and in a larger society where there seems to be more pressure on people in your position to not do the right thing than to do the right thing," Common Pleas Court Judge Benjamin Lerner told Glover.
"You have a fresh start and so far you have made the most of it. I hope you continue to do so," the judge added.
Glover, 26, apologized to his family and the court "for all the stress I caused" and told Lerner, "I'll just be glad when I can put this all behind me."
Lerner sentenced Glover to 2 to 12 months in prison - the state sentencing guidelines called for a 9- to 16-month prison term - but immediately paroled him because Glover spent three months in jail before posting $250,000 bail.
Glover remains on parole for the next year. When he finishes that he will begin two years of reporting probation.
Assistant District Attorney Edward Cameron did not object to the non-custodial sentence, noting that Glover began cooperating with his office shortly after he was arrested in November 2007.
Glover pleaded guilty to driving Lewis, 23, from the city to Wilmington on Nov. 3, 2007 and buying him a $231 round-trip bus ticket to Miami.
Although he pleaded guilty and agreed to testify against his cousin, that decision placed Glover under heavy pressure from his extended family, according to Cameron and defense attorney Michael I. McDermott.
That stress was apparent on Nov. 17 when Glover testified at his cousin's trial.
Glover testified emotionally that he helped Lewis because his cousin was suicidal and threatening to kill other police and civilians, and because of "love for that young man."
Glover's words triggered an emotional outburst from Lewis. "I love you, too, man!" he shouted from across the courtroom.
Lewis was convicted of first-degree murder for shooting Cassidy, 54, to death during the armed robbery of a North Philadelphia doughnut shop. The jury sentenced Lewis to death by lethal injection, a sentence Lewis is preparing to appeal.