Niagara Gazette

Local News

July 11, 2014

Mistrial for Murphy

Niagara Gazette — LOCKPORT — The trial of a wheelchair-bound man suspected by police of dealing drugs ended Thursday when a Niagara County Court judge declared a mistrial in his case.

Judge Sara Sheldon Farkas dismissed a jury of seven women and five men, who had heard two days worth of testimony in the case of Frank Murphy, not long after they began their deliberations. Farkas said there were concerns that members of the jury had discussed “possible facts” that were “outside the evidence presented at the trial.”

There were apparently allegations that members of the jury had discussed information contained in newspaper articles about the case that were published prior to the trial. Farkas scheduled a hearing for July 24 to discuss the next move in the case.

Murphy, 28, 1101 Walnut Ave., Apt. 2, is facing charges of third- and fifth-degree criminal possession of a controlled substance and second-degree criminal possession of a weapon after his arrest by Falls police narcotics detectives.

Murphy went to trial after rejecting a plea offer from prosecutors that would have guaranteed him a minimum sentence from Farkas. In return for his guilty plea to a charge of attempted second-degree criminal possession of a weapon, Farkas told Murphy he would have received a prison term of no more than three to seven years.

That plea offer was taken away when opening statements in Murphy’s trial began on Tuesday afternoon.

Narcotics detectives Joseph Giaquinto and Jay Reynolds seized a gun and drugs from Murphy when they found him in the 500 block of Ferry Avenue while investigating complaints called into a public tip line of a “man in a wheelchair selling drugs” in that area.

Reynolds and Giaquinto testified during the trial that they went to investigate the complaints and spotted a man in a wheelchair who matched the suspect description that had been left on the tip line.

Text Only | Photo Reprints
Local News
Featured Ads
Seasonal Content
House Ads
AP Video
Kerry: Humanitarian Cease-fire Efforts Continue Raw: Corruption Trial Begins for Former Va Gov. The Carbon Trap: US Exports Global Warming UN Security Council Calls for Gaza Cease-fire Traditional African Dishes Teach Healthy Eating 13 Struck by Lightning on Calif. Beach Baseball Hall of Famers Inducted Israel, Hamas Trade Fire Despite Truce in Gaza Italy's Nibali Set to Win First Tour De France Raw: Shipwrecked Concordia Completes Last Voyage Raw: Sea Turtle Hatchlings Emerge From Nest Raw: Massive Dust Storm Covers Phoenix 12-hour Cease-fire in Gaza Fighting Begins Raw: Bolivian Dancers Attempt to Break Record Raw: Israel, Palestine Supporters Rally in US Raw: Air Algerie Flight 5017 Wreckage Virginia Governor Tours Tornado Aftermath Judge Faces Heat Over Offer to Help Migrant Kids Kangaroo Goes Missing in Oklahoma More M17 Bodies Return, Sanctions on Russia Grow
Opinion
House Ads
Night & Day
Twitter News
Follow us on twitter
Hyperlocal Search
Premier Guide
Find a business

Walking Fingers
Maps, Menus, Store hours, Coupons, and more...
Premier Guide
Front page
Poll

Do you think cigarette sales to non-Native American customers should be taxed on reservations?

Yes. Items should be taxed like they are everywhere else.
No, the indian reservations are sovereign land and they are selling them on their land.
Not up to me. Native Americans decide the rules on their land.
Don't care. Smoking isn't good for you.
     View Results