LOCKPORT – A wheelchair-bound Niagara Falls man was jailed without bail Monday after he lied about being in the hospital instead of showing up for his trial in Niagara County Court.
“I have no excuse for lying,” Frank D. Murphy, a paraplegic, told County Judge Sara Sheldon Farkas after police found him in bed at his home on Walnut Avenue.
Murphy, 29, was arrested July 23 on Ferry Avenue after Falls police checking on a report of a man in a wheelchair selling drugs allegedly found a bag of crack cocaine in his lap. Police also said he dropped a loaded handgun as he tried to roll away from officers.
Monday morning, as jury selection was to begin, Murphy told court-appointed defense attorney David Mansour that he was in Erie County Medical Center with a bladder infection. A court staffer called ECMC and quickly confirmed Murphy wasn’t there.
Testimony is expected to begin today, after nine jurors were chosen for the trial Monday afternoon.