Niagara Gazette

Local News

November 8, 2013

Judge rules DePetris traffic stop was legal

Niagara Gazette — LOCKPORT -- A Niagara County Court judge has ruled that the traffic stop of a truck linked to a shooting and the seizure of a small arsenal of weapons was "perfectly legal."

As a result, prosecutors can use all of that evidence and any statements made by Timothy DePetris to a veteran Falls Police detective at his upcoming attempted murder trials.

DePetris' defense had argued that the traffic stop that led to his arrest was illegal and that all the evidence seized as a result should be barred from his trials. Niagara County Court Judge Sara Sheldon Farkas disagreed.

The son of the founder of Electrodyn Choke Corp., DePetris has been charged in two cases that both involve attempts to murder his brother-in-law. He has pleaded not guilty to four counts of first-degree attempted murder, two counts of second-degree attempted murder, two counts of conspiracy and two counts of criminal solicitation in connection with an attempt to hire a hitman, while he was in the Niagara County Jail, to kill his brother-in-law and a witness in the earlier shooting of his relative.

In mid-May, DePetris was charged with attempted first-degree murder, first-degree criminal use of a firearm, three counts of second-degree criminal possession of a weapon, six counts of third-degree criminal possession of a weapon and second-degree criminal trespass in connection with the shooting of his brother-in-law in the early morning hours of March 26.

Farkas previously dismissed six of those charges after finding that they were not included in the New York SAFE Act at the time of DePetris' arrest.

On Friday, Farkas said the stop of a truck that DePetris was riding in, four days after the shooting of his brother-in-law, was permitted because then Falls Police Det. Patrick Stack had information that linked a truck with that description to the shooting incident.

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