LOCKPORT – Niagara County Judge Sara Sheldon Farkas said no to a misdemeanor plea offer for a Niagara Falls woman accused of the June 12 slashing of her 19-year-old cousin with a razor blade on Cleveland Avenue in that city.
Shawnquilla N. Armstrong, 20, of Ninth Street, had been indicted on charges of second-degree assault, a felony, and fourth-degree criminal possession of a weapon. However, Assistant District Attorney Ryan K. Parisi was offering a chance to plead guilty to third-degree assault, a misdemeanor.
Armstrong and her attorney, James J. Faso Jr., wanted the plea because Faso said he feared Parisi was planning to resubmit the case to the grand jury in hopes of winning a revised indictment featuring a first-degree assault charge, worth a maximum of 25 years in prison.
However, Farkas on Thursday said she wouldn’t go along with the “extraordinarily generous” misdemeanor plea after Faso admitted he didn’t know a lot of details about the case. Farkas said she didn’t either, and instructed Parisi not to seek a vote on a new indictment. She ordered the sides back to court Wednesday.