Seven Strikes and You’re Out?

Modified: October 24, 2014 11:57am


Erie County District Attorney Frank A. Sedita, III announces that 44 year-old Tommy Martin of 161 Lombard Avenue in the City of Buffalo was convicted as charged of Burglary in the Second Degree, after a jury trial before State Supreme Court Justice Christopher Burns. 

On October 22, 2012, Martin burglarized the victim’s home and business. The victim owns and operates a restaurant out of the building which is also his family’s home.  Martin pushed through a broken door and knocked out a locked service window to gain entry. After hopping the counter, Martin stole money from the front counter-cash register area and fled. 

At trial, Martin suggested that he was not the culprit; that the police apprehended the wrong man; and, that he was being wrongfully prosecuted. That fact that Buffalo Police Officers Theodore Williams and Marcus Fears immediately responded to the burglary call and found Martin near the burglary scene, with the proceeds from the burglary in his pocket, tended to undermine the persuasiveness of his claims.

Neither swift of mind nor fleet of foot, Martin seems, in the words of one veteran courthouse observer, “intent upon serving life on the installment plan.” In 1996, Martin was convicted of Attempted Robbery in the 3rd Degree. In 1997, Martin was convicted of Attempted Burglary in the 3rd Degree. In 1999, Martin was convicted of Burglary in the 3rd Degree. In 2004 and again in 2007, Martin was convicted of Attempted Burglary in the 3rd Degree. In 2011, Martin was convicted of Unlawful Imprisonment.

Based upon the foregoing, the People intend to petition the court to find that Martin is a Persistent Felony Offender when he is sentenced by Justice Burns on October 28, 2014. Should the court agree, Martin faces a continuous maximum term of life imprisonment; if not, he faces a maximum of 15 years behind bars.

The case was successfully prosecuted by Assistant District Attorney Brian Langenfeld, who is assigned to DA Sedita’s Felony Trial Bureau and who is also a recent graduate of the New York Prosecutors Training Institute’s Daniel T. McCarthy School of Trial Advocacy.