The teenage shooter of Syracuse Police Officer Wallie Howard Jr. in 1990 will be resentenced by a Federal judge on January 10th in the wake of a ruling by the United States Supreme Court. Robert "Bam Bam" Lawrence is currently serving 30 years to life in Great Meadow State Correctional.
It was a U.S. Supreme Court ruling last year that led to a review of the sentencing of life in prison for Lawrence. He was 16 years old when he shot Officer Howard in the back of the head during an undercover drug buy near Mario's Big "M" Market on Syracuse's south side.
In 1993 Federal Judge Neil McCurn followed sentencing guidelines which only allowed a sentence of death or life in prison for killing a federal police officer. The U.S. Attorney did not seek the death penalty.
Lawrence has a public defender who is assisting with his application for resentencing. He is one of several men convicted in the shooting death of Officer Howard and the surrounding drug transaction.
Lawrence is now 39 years old. He is eligible for parole on his New York State conviction in 2020. Only if parole is granted would he then begin serving a federal prison sentence.