Niagara Gazette

Courts

July 29, 2013

Man who encouraged driver to flee scene violates probation, heading to jail

Niagara Gazette —

A Tonawanda man already on probation for encouraging an acquaintance to flee the scene of a 2009 accident in Amherst will now serve jail time for violating the terms of his release. 

John Pieri, 40, of Wendel Avenue, who was a passenger in a vehicle driven by Andrea Glinski when she struck two woman near Daemen College in March 2009, had been found guilty of criminal solicitation for telling her to leave the scene of the accident, in which both woman were injured, one of them seriously, according to Erie County District Attorney Frank Sedita. 

Pieri was convicted later that year and sentenced to one year in jail, though that conviction was later overturned on what Sedita framed as a "legal technicality." Before a retrial on the solicitation charges took place in November 2009, Sedita said, Pieri pleaded guilty to the charge and was sentenced to probation and 30 days served at the Erie County Correction Facility. 

Sedita said, however, that "despite the substantial reduction in his sentence" from one year to one month, "Pieri repeatedly and publicly consumed alcohol in violation of his probation conditions." As a result he was found guilty of violating those terms this year and sentenced to one year in jail. 

Yet on Monday, after an appeal, that sentence was reduced to 10 months incarceration by Erie County Court Judge Thomas P. Franczyk. Sedita indicated that the judgement came despite Franczyk's reservations that "Pieri's behavior was wanting for human decency and compassion." 

However, Sedita said the sentence was reduced to 10 months because Pieri did not have a prior criminal record and because he was employed. 

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