Maintaining his innocence, a Sackets Harbor man was sentenced Monday in Jefferson County Court to 25 years in state prison for shooting and seriously injuring his wife in 2010.
Darron S. Morris, 43, also will have to undergo five years of supervision upon his release from prison after being convicted at trial July 27 of second-degree attempted murder and three other counts for shooting his wife, Sherry L., with a pistol twice on Aug. 4, 2010, during a domestic dispute at their Madison Barracks apartment. Morris also shot himself in the head during a five-hour standoff with police.
Trial testimony showed that Morris shot his wife shortly after finding her having sex with a stranger in a back room at the Sackets Harbor American Legion. Mrs. Morris testified that Morris threatened to kill her as they walked home from the Legion and then loaded a gun and shot her twice. She suffered injuries that have left her paralyzed from the chest down. Morris told Judge Kim H. Martusewicz before sentencing that his wife lied in her testimony.
I still find it hard to believe that I was found guilty based on the testimony of one person, Morris said.
He said testimony from others at the Legion showed that he did not walk home with his wife and he denied he threatened to kill her.
There was no conversation between us whatsoever, he said.
Morris, who did not take the stand in his defense at trial, said his wifes testimony was given unwarranted credibility because it fit with prosecutors theory about how and why the crime was committed.
Just because I caught her in an act of adultery, that does not mean you kill someone or try to kill someone, Mr. Morris said. There is no evidence that I ever tried to do such a thing.
His attorney, Eric T. Swartz, told Judge Martusewicz that Morris had been a good son, a good soldier who served in the Army overseas, and a good father to his now adult daughter, but Judge Martusewicz denied any request for leniency. The judge said Morris had a history of thievery before joining the military and had tried to scam the military by claiming an unspecified disability, an insurance company by claiming items had been stolen from his apartment in a burglary that never occurred, psychologists who weighed his competence to stand trial and a jury and this court.
The defendant is a violent and dangerous scammer, Judge Martusewicz said.
Mr. Swartz said Morris will appeal the judgment.