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Teen charged in Colton-Pierrepont rifle incident jailed for probation violation

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CANTON — A Hannawa Falls teen who brought a rifle to the Colton-Pierrepont Central School campus in March was returned to St. Lawrence County Court on a warrant Friday for allegedly violating his probation.

State police on Friday charged Sawyer M. Pignona, 18, of 96 Postwood Road, with sexual misconduct, first-degree unlawfully dealing with a child and endangering the welfare of a child, all misdemeanors.

Troopers allege that Mr. Pignona had been serving alcohol to minors from his parents’ residence and had sex with a 16-year-old female. Troopers said they were alerted by county probation officials Thursday.

Mr. Pignona also allegedly tested positive for alcohol during a probation appointment, another violation of his probation, County Court Judge Jerome J. Richards said.

On Sept. 30, Judge Richards placed Mr. Pignona and co-defendant Connor I. Warden, 17, of 19 Sisson St., Potsdam, on one year of interim probation for criminal possession of a weapon on school grounds, a class E felony. Mr. Pignona also was charged with second-degree menacing after he and Mr. Warden went to Colton-Pierrepont school on March 18 and Mr. Pignona brandished the weapon from a car window, sending the school into lockdown.

If Mr. Pignona had been successful in interim probation, he would have been able to vacate his felony plea, plead guilty to two misdemeanors and been eligible for youthful offender status, meaning he would not have a criminal record after he completed probation.

Judge Richards told Mr. Pignona that he is now facing the possibility of state prison.

“I warned you to abide by the release conditions,” Judge Richards said. “You know where you stand.”

Judge Richards sent Mr. Pignona to St. Lawrence County jail without bail. He is scheduled to reappear on Feb. 28.

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