Saratoga County District Attorney Karen A. Heggen announces that Stephen Lerario, dob 3/9/76 of Greenfield, New York, was sentenced today in Saratoga County Supreme Court following a jury trial in March. Today he received the following sentences from Acting Supreme Court Justice Frank P. Milano: 25 years incarceration in a state correctional facility, to be followed by five years post-release supervision for the conviction of Attempted Murder in the Second Degree, in violation of New York State Penal Law Section 125.25(1), a “Class B” Violent Felony; 25 years incarceration in a state correctional facility, to be followed by five years post-release supervision for the conviction of Assault in the First Degree, in violation on NYS Penal Law Section 120.10(1), a “Class B” Violent Felony; 3 ½ to 7 years incarceration in a state correctional facility for the conviction of Criminal Possession of a Weapon in the Third Degree, a “Class D” Felony; and one year incarceration for the conviction of Criminal Possession of a Weapon in the Fourth Degree, in violation of NYS Penal Law Section 265.01(4), a “Class A” Misdemeanor. Justice Milano directed that all of the sentences were to run concurrently.
The charges stem from an incident that occurred on April 7, 2018 on Grange Road in the Town of Greenfield. Defendant Lerario argued that day with his girlfriend at their residence. That argument escalated and Lerario armed himself with a 20-gauge Stoeger Coach double barrel shot gun, leveled it at the victim and fired at close range, hitting the victim in the head. She sustained significant injuries, including the loss of her right eye, brain injury, and facial fractures. She testified at the trial, providing details about the day of the shooting and the extent of her injuries.
Today in court, Assistant District Attorney Jennifer L. Buckley read the victim’s impact statement to the court. In that statement, the victim recounted the crime, noting that on April 7, 2018, “…at roughly 8 pm my life completely changed. You not only punched me in the face, but you shot me in the face”. She went on to recount the many struggles and challenges following her injuries she must deal with each day.
DA Heggen noted the diligence and cooperative efforts of the Saratoga County Sheriff’s Office, the New York State Police Forensic Investigation Unit and the Saratoga Springs Police Department that put together the pieces of evidence that Assistant District Attorney Jennifer L. Buckley, with assistance from Assistant District Attorney Adele M. Kurtz, were able to assemble and present to the jury, to show the full and complete picture of the heinous actions of the defendant on April 7, 2019. Ms. Buckley told Judge Milano, “the victim has no memory of being shot- remembering only the gun pointed between her eyes by the defendant as she crouched in the corner of her kitchen, covering her head with her arm”. ADA Buckley went on to review the defendant’s criminal history, concluding, “the defendant has had some degree of contact with the criminal justice system either being incarcerated, under parole or probation supervision, or having pending charges each and every year since 1996”. ADA Buckley requested that Judge Milano impose the maximum sentence allowed, given the defendant’s conduct on April 7, 2018, as well as taking into account the defendant’s prior criminal history.