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Pleasantville man gets 10 years in teen girl’s killing

A Pleasantville man was sentenced to 10 years in prison Thursday for the fatal shooting of a 15-year-old girl in 2019.

Nahquil Lovest pleaded guilty two years ago in the killing of Naimah Bell.

Naimah Bell was just 15 when she was fatally shot.

Lovest had just turned 18 when he and several other teens were inside a recently vacated Atlantic City home on Massachusetts Avenue early July 25, 2019.

There, he took a recently loaded gun and shot the girl in the head.

Police were called to the home at 4:17 a.m., and found Bell on a bed dead.

Lovest dropped the gun and broke down in tears after the killing, witnesses told police.

“It was an accident,” they quoted him as saying.

The defense argued Thursday for the judge to consider that it was not intentional.

But Judge Bernard DeLury said any time a firearm is involved, especially one that was recently loaded, the potential of injury or death should be understood.

Lovest was originally charged with murder. In January 2020, he pleaded guilty to aggravated manslaughter in exchange for a potential 10-year sentence.

The judge followed that plea agreement, sentencing the now 20-year-old man to 10 years in prison. He must serve at least 8½ years under the No Early Release Act. He has credit for about 2½ years, meaning he will be eligible for parole when he’s 26.

Once released, he will be under five years of parole supervision.

Lovest was also sentenced to seven years in prison for two separate weapons charges, and another seven for conspiracy to distribute a controlled dangerous substance.

The other sentences were all concurrent, meaning they won’t add to his overall time.

This story is developing. Check back for updates.

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