Jury selection will begin Monday for one of the three men accused in the killing of New York State Trooper Andrew J. Sperr. The suspected shooter, Anthony Horton, is the first of the three men who will face trial.
Trooper Sperr was shot and killed on March 1 after he pulled over a vehicle in the town of Big Flats, probably not knowing the occupants had allegedly been involved in an earlier bank robbery. Trooper Sperr was shot a number of times as he stepped out of his patrol vehicle, yet was still able to return fire. He wounded the two men in the vehicle, who are now facing murder charges. A third accomplice is charged in connection with the robbery.
Below is an article from the Democrat & Chronicle newspaper of Rochester about the upcoming jury selection and trial.
(Elmira Star Gazette)
(September 14, 2006) — ELMIRA — The family of slain State Trooper Andrew J. Sperr, a Greece native, will be in Chemung County Court for the trial of one of three men accused in the killing.
Sperr’s parents, Andrew L. and Jean Sperr, and other family members plan to be in court Monday for jury selection and for the duration of the trial.
Anthony Horton of Elmira, who goes on trial Monday, faces 10 counts in connection with Sperr’s shooting and a bank robbery.
Investigators believe Horton and two others were involved in a holdup at the Big Flats branch of Chemung Canal Trust Co. on March 1 and that Sperr happened upon Horton and another suspect a few minutes later.
Aggravated murder of a law enforcement officer carries a mandatory sentence of life in prison without parole.
Horton, the suspected shooter in Sperr’s death, will be the first suspect to go on trial. The cases against brothers Bryan and Wayne Adams are pending in Chemung County Court.
Sperr’s father, Andrew, said the family has braced for the emotional impact of reliving the details of the day their son died.
"It’s taken six months to get to this point. It’s not as if you feel better about things," Andrew L. Sperr said. "You feel a little more comfortable with the way things are going. I hope justice catches up with these guys."