Falls man gets 50 years for Poppy's Bar shooting

David F. Pryor III

David F. Pryor III, of Niagara Falls, was sentenced Friday to 50 years in prison for shooting and grievously injuring two men outside a Falls bar Aug. 26, 2018.

Pryor, 27, was convicted after a jury trial Aug. 2 of two counts of second-degree attempted murder and one count each of first-degree assault, second-degree assault and second-degree criminal possession of a weapon. Two days before the jury reached their verdict, Pryor's cousin, William McMillen of Niagara Falls, claimed he shot the two men with a handgun after a fight in the parking lot of Poppy's Place, on Cayuga Drive.

McMillen had previously been granted immunity for charges related to the shooting for his testimony to a grand jury.

Niagara County Court Judge Sara Sheldon said jurors, who convicted Pryor of every count, found McMillen's claims "incredible."

Both victims wrote statements asking Sheldon to give Pryor the maximum sentence of 50 years.

Seth O'Harrow said the shooting left him in a coma for over a month, erased his sense of taste and smell, and forced him to relearn how to talk and type.

"My head will forever have large and obvious scars, with fragments of my skull inside," O'Harrow said in a statement read by Assistant District Attorney Mary Jean Bowman.

Samuel Musolino said the shooting forced him to close a business he had just started and left a bullet in his chest that could still cause life-threatening complications. He added he is reminded of the shooting by bystander footage and online comments from Pryor's supporters, "as if it was our fault we were shot."

"I'm reminded of the shooting by how close we were to dying," Musolino said in a statement read by Bowman.

"The victims' injuries are devastating," Sheldon said. "They nearly died."

Sheldon sentenced Pryor to 25 years on each attempted murder count, to run consecutively, as well as separate concurrent sentences for the assault and weapons charges. She also said Pryor told probation officers that he did not shoot anyone and plans to appeal the convictions.

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