Guilty pleas bring end to years-long weapons case
Two Buffalo men entered guilty pleas this week in Chautauqua County Court just before their weapons possession case was set to go to trial for a second time.
Stemming from a March 2020 shooting in Jamestown, the pleas bring to a close a years-long case slowed by the COVID-19 pandemic and a mistrial late last year.
Mikial Moore pleaded guilty to a reduced charge of fourth-degree criminal possession of a weapon while Torrie Jones pleaded guilty to third-degree attempted criminal possession of a weapon. Each had been indicted on a charge of second-degree criminal possession of a weapon.
Jury selection was scheduled to begin this week in County Court. Moore, represented by attorney David Roggenbaum, and Jones, represented by the county Public Defender’s Office, were tried together.
In December 2021, County Court Judge David Foley declared a mistrial in the case. At the time, District Attorney Jason Schmidt said it was due to “certain information (that) was conveyed to the jurors which should not have been.”
Three months prior, in September 2021, potential jurors were sent home and the trial was postponed after “COVID concerns” arose just before jury selection was to begin. Schmidt said it was due to an individual involved in the trial who became ill.
Moore and Jones were initially charged following a shooting March 26, 2020, in front of 707 Jefferson St. in Jamestown. A city man drove himself to UPMC Chautauqua for treatment of non-life-threatening injuries after he was reportedly struck in the head.
An investigation by the Jamestown Police Department led to six arrests, including Moore and Jones.
During a search of the Jefferson Street home, investigators reportedly found four unlawfully possessed handguns along with 200 rounds of ammunition, 12 pounds of marijuana, 1.2 ounces of cocaine and around $4,000 in cash.
The pair was indicted in August 2020.
Jones is tentatively scheduled to be sentenced on the reduced charge at 1:30 p.m. Nov. 28; Moore is scheduled to be sentenced at 10:30 a.m. Jan. 9, 2023.