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A gunman caught on surveillance video shooting his victim at point-blank range in March pleaded guilty Thursday to first-degree manslaughter.

Taire M. Chaney, 21, admitted shooting Anthony L. Pitts, 20, in the head early March 2 outside Pandora's Sports Bar at Fillmore and Victoria avenues. The shooting followed a minor altercation inside the tavern about an hour earlier.

"I was at a bar, and things got out of hand," Chaney told State Supreme Court Justice Christopher J. Burns. "It was the worst decision of my life."

After Chaney's arrest, Mayor Byron W. Brown and Police Commissioner Daniel Derenda met with reporters outside the bar to reveal how a city surveillance camera, on a utility pole more than two blocks away, helped lead homicide detectives to Chaney. Security cameras also captured what police called graphic footage of the shooting.

The two officials hailed the use of the surveillance camera as a crime-fighting tool. Since 2006, the Brown administration has added 125 such cameras, with 25 more on the way, the mayor said at the time of Chaney's arrest.

Brown also praised residents who provided tips to detectives, leading to Chaney's arrest on a charge of second-degree murder.

Prosecutor Mary Beth DePasquale said Pitts' family consented to the plea.

"They are in agreement with this disposition," she told the judge.

Chaney faces five to 25 years in prison when sentenced Oct. 23. The District Attorney's Office will seek the maximum sentence, DePasquale said.

Burns did not say how long a prison term he is inclined to impose.

"I will listen to recommendations each side wants to provide," he said.





email: plakamp@buffnews.com