Near-death experience brings lighter sentence – New York News

ALBANY — A federal court judge Wednesday morning said he would have sentenced a Schenectady man who accidentally shot himself to a longer sentence, if not for the fact that he died.

Edwin Ferrer, 44, was clinically dead after the December 2015 shooting. Only the work of Ellis Hospital staff saved him, Judge Mae D’Agostino said in court.

“If inadvertently killing yourself doesn’t make you turn yourself around, I don’t know what will,” D’Agostino said.

He then sentenced Ferrer to 5 years and 3 months in prison for a conviction of firearms possession by a felon.

Prosecutors asked for more than six years; Ferrer’s defense asked for just over three.

Police began investigating after Ferrer arrived at Ellis Hospital on Dec. 18, 2015, with a gunshot wound to his left leg. 

When he recovered, he told investigators he had the gun because he was looking for a person he believed had vandalized his car. As Ferrer got out of his car, the gun went off.

When given a chance to speak Wednesday, Ferrer focused mostly on his son, saying he wanted a second chance to be with him.

“I learned my lesson,” he said.

Injuries aside, the judge had strong words for Ferrer: When he grabbed a gun to retaliate against a man he believed vandalized his car, the judge noted, “You weren’t thinking about your son, clearly.”

Assistant U.S. Attorney Richard Bellis argued in court documents filed ahead of the sentencing that, “as the defendant is now patently aware,” guns are dangerous weapons. Ferrer’s conduct is serious and required strong punishment, Bellis wrote.

Ferrer’s defense attorney, Eric K. Schillinger, argued Ferrer has…

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