FULTON, NY – Charges against the former Fulton lawmaker who was arrested in January for intentionally trying to deceive police will be dismissed after a year if he stays out of trouble, according to court officials.
Former Fulton Common Council president Kenneth Myers, 70, appeared for sentencing Monday morning in Fulton City Court before Watertown City Court Judge James C. Harberson Jr. Harberson was assigned to the case after both Fulton City Court judges Spencer Ludington and Jerome Mirabito recused themselves.
Myers pleaded guilty in May to obstructing governmental administration as part of a plea agreement with the Oswego County District AttorneyÃƒÂ¢Ã¢â€šÂ¬Ã‹Å“s office.
Under the agreement, Myers admitted that on Jan. 4 in the town of Volney, he obstructed governmental administration by assisting his son to persuade another person to give a false statement to New York State Police, relative to a New YearÃƒÂ¢Ã¢â€šÂ¬Ã¢â€žÂ¢s Eve motor-vehicle accident that took place in the town of Palermo.
Myers and his son, 41-year-old Michael L. Myers, were arrested in January in connection with the attempted cover-up. Michael Myers was driving alone on New YearÃƒÂ¢Ã¢â€šÂ¬Ã¢â€žÂ¢s Eve when the accident occurred. He reportedly left the vehicle and contacted his father. Police said that his driverÃƒÂ¢Ã¢â€šÂ¬Ã¢â€žÂ¢s license was revoked at the time.
Together, father and son asked a friend to say that he was driving the vehicle in exchange for $500. Though the first person asked declined, police said a second person agreed. The elder Myers was originally charged with second-degree obstructing governmental administration, fifth-degree conspiracy and fourth-degree criminal solicitation.
According to Fulton City Chief Court Clerk Maureen Ball, Judge Harberson agreed with the probation department recommendation and ordered a one-year conditional discharge in the case. Additionally, Harberson ordered Myers to pay a $160 surcharge.
In court, Ball said Myers expressed remorse for his actions.
ÃƒÂ¢Ã¢â€šÂ¬Ã…â€œHe said he has learned his lesson and that this will never happen again,ÃƒÂ¢Ã¢â€šÂ¬Ã‚Â she said. ÃƒÂ¢Ã¢â€šÂ¬Ã…â€œIt was a very brief appearance.ÃƒÂ¢Ã¢â€šÂ¬Ã‚Â
ÃƒÂ¢Ã¢â€šÂ¬Ã…â€œOur office had no objection to Judge HarbersonÃƒÂ¢Ã¢â€šÂ¬Ã¢â€žÂ¢s determination,ÃƒÂ¢Ã¢â€šÂ¬Ã‚Â Chief Assistant District Attorney Donald Todd said. ÃƒÂ¢Ã¢â€šÂ¬Ã…â€œIt was the recommendation by the probation department.
ÃƒÂ¢Ã¢â€šÂ¬Ã…â€œMr. Myers had never previously been in trouble with the law,ÃƒÂ¢Ã¢â€šÂ¬Ã‚Â Todd added. ÃƒÂ¢Ã¢â€šÂ¬Ã…â€œIt was an appropriate disposition, given the circumstances.ÃƒÂ¢Ã¢â€šÂ¬Ã‚Â
MyersÃƒÂ¢Ã¢â€šÂ¬Ã¢â€žÂ¢ attorney, James Eby, could not be reached for comment Tuesday afternoon.
In April, Oswego County Court Judge Walter Hafner Jr. sentenced MyersÃƒÂ¢Ã¢â€šÂ¬Ã¢â€žÂ¢ son to two to four years in state prison on a felony count of first-degree offering a false instrument for filing and one year for a felony charge of driving while intoxicated. Michael Myers is currently in custody at Gowanda Correctional Facility, a medium-security prison in Erie County. His earliest possible release date is Jan. 5, 2010.