‘John’ gets probation in pimp shooting

Posted: September 27, 2011

A West Philadelphia man - acquitted of murder but convicted on gun charges in the 2009 shooting of a pimp who interrupted him with a prostitute - was sentenced to five years probation this morning by a Philadelphia judge.

Kalif Lewis, 28, apologized to the family of Tyre West, 28, who was shot and killed in the Dec. 17, 2009 confrontation at a room in the airport Residence Inn in South Philadelphia.

Lewis also apologized to his family and the judge for having to go through the trouble of a trial, which ended Aug. 8 in the jury's verdict.

Lewis spent 20 months in jail awaiting trial; Common Pleas Court Judge M. Teresa Sarmina granted him $10,000 bail after the jury's verdict.

Defense attorney Gerald Stein said afterward that the sentence was in line with state sentencing guidelines.

Lewis' .40-caliber handgun was legally owned and registered but he did not have a permit to carry the weapon. Because he had no criminal record, Stein said, the two weapons counts are graded as misdemeanors.

According to trial testimony, Lewis, who is married, called prostitute/dominatrix Shanet Foust after seeing her ad on Craigslist for a "$99 special" and set up the appointment. After sex, Lewis left the room but then returned in what Assistant District Attorney Richard Sax alleged was a plan to rob Foust.

Foust, 28, called West, her pimp and husband, on her cellphone and he came to the room with a gun, confronted Lewis and fired at him.

Stein argued that Lewis returned to the room after he discovered that he was missing a $100 bill and wanted it back. When West burst into the room, Stein argued, Lewis fired back in self-defense.

"I was like a deer in headlights," Lewis testified at trial. "I was scared. That's when he fired."

West fell dead outside the door of the hotel room.

Contact staff writer Joseph A. Slobodzian at 215-854-2985, jslobodzian@phillynews.com, or @joeslobo on Twitter.


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