Salah Salahadyn sentenced to seven years in prison for robbery, theft of violin

MILWAUKEE (WITI) -- A Milwaukee County judge sentenced 42-year-old Salah Salahadyn on Monday, November 10th to seven years in prison and another five years of extended supervision. Salahadyn pleaded guilty in October to a robbery charge related to the case of the stolen Stradivarius violin. The valuable instrument was stolen from concertmaster Frank Almond following a concert in Wauwatosa this past January.

Salahadyn was accused of tasing Almond and then grabbing the valuable violin as Almond fell to the ground. In court on Monday, Salahadyn reflected on that day, saying, “I got the violin in my hand, almost as if it were handed to me, and I pressed that button, and my life changed at that moment just as it probably did for him.”

While he was addressing the court, he also implied that he had a reason for doing what he did. "I wanted to buy as many boarded up properties that I could have bought, to perhaps rehabilitate those homes and create some jobs for people," said Salahadyn.

The judge responded, "That may sound like a noble thing. It may even sound like Robin Hood to you. But it`s not the way life is."

Judge Moroney referred back to that several times during the sentencing itself. He also ordered Salahadyn to take several programs as part of his rehabilitation, including cognitive thinking intervention counseling, and parenting counseling.

Frank Almond, the victim in the attack, was also present in the courtroom Monday, and addressed the judge as to why he felt Salahadyn should receive the maximum sentence.

“There was extraordinary premeditation to this particular crime. Including years of planning, including various degrees of stalking which Mr. Salahadyn seems quite proud of. His efforts to obtain my home address, the names of my children, and other personal details added an alarming detail to the armed robbery I had already endured,” said Almond. He continued, "this was ultimately a vicious and unprovoked attack that could have ended in a permanent career ending injury or worse, as well as the destruction of one of the world’s artistic treasures that intentionally found its most recent home in, of all places, the city of Milwaukee."

Salahadyn's complete sentence is not finalized yet. Salahadyn objected to the judge's ruling of restitution in the amount of $4,014.57. So hearing is now scheduled for December 18th on that matter. Salahadyn will appear in court through video.

The other man charged in the case, Universal Allah, was sentenced in July to three-and-a-half years in prison and three-and-a-half years of extended supervision for his role in the theft. Allah pleaded guilty to a felony count of robbery as party to a crime. Prosecutors say Allah provided the stun gun used to attack Almond as he left the performance.

Police recovered the 300-year-old Stradivarius violin in good condition nine days after it was taken.

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