Modified: March 31, 2015 3:32pm
Erie County District Attorney Frank A. Sedita, III announces that 22 year-old Angel Marcial of 19 Arthur Street in the City of Buffalo pleaded guilty as charged to Criminal Possession of a Controlled Substance in the 3rd Degree, two counts of Criminal Sale of a Controlled Substance in the 3rd Degree, Attempted Bribery in the 3rd Degree and Burglary in the 2nd Degree before Supreme Court Justice Christopher J. Burns. These were the highest charges for which the defendant could have been convicted. Despite overtures to offer the defendant a plea bargain, the District Attorney’s Office would not agree to permit the defendant to plead guilty to lesser charges. In short, Marcial was prosecuted to the fullest extent of the law.
The convictions stem from three separate occurrences over the course of 18 months.
On January 3, 2013, Buffalo Police Officers stopped Marical’s vehicle for a traffic infraction at the intersection of Guernsey Street and Harp Street in the City of Buffalo. The officers discovered heroin in the center console and arrested Marcial for possession with intent to sell it. The officers also recovered over $900 in drug proceeds from Marcial, who offered the money to the officers in exchange for his release. The officers declined the bribe. The defendant was released on bail at Buffalo City Court and that status continued when the defendant was arraigned on his first indictment before Justice Burns, without objection by the People.
In August 2013, the Erie County Sheriff’s Office conducted an investigation into drug trafficking on Buffalo’s Westside. A number of heroin addicts overdosed during this time due to a fatal mixture of heroin and fentanyl. On August 14, 2013 and August 16, 2013, an undercover officer purchased suspected heroin from Marcial. Laboratory testing revealed that the substance was a mixture of heroin and fentanyl. Over the People’s objection, Marcial was released on bail by Justice Burns.
Finally, on June 30, 2014, Marcial subjected his girlfriend to domestic violence. He kicked in the door to her home, unlawfully entered, assaulted the victim, urinated on her, and forced her to spend the night with him. The victim escaped once Marcial fell asleep and reported the defendant’s crimes to the authorities. This time, Justice Burns remanded Marcial into custody.
Marcial faces a maximum prison sentence of up to 46 years if he is sentenced consecutively on all of his charges. Justice Burns has indicated he will sentence Marcial to no more than 3½ years in prison. The matter is scheduled for sentencing before Justice Burns on March 19, 2015 at 9:30AM.
The case was successfully prosecuted by Assistant District Attorney James R. Gardner, who is assigned to DA Sedita’s Felony Trial Bureau and Assistant District Attorney John P. Gerken, Jr., who is assigned to DA Sedita’s Tactical Prosecution Unit.