Jury Finds Buffalo Man Guilty for Shooting Homeless Man Outside of His Black Rock Apartment

Modified: December 2, 2022 4:13pm

12/2/2022

Erie County District Attorney John J. Flynn announces that a jury has found 37-year-old Damien A. Morris of Buffalo guilty of one count of Assault in the First Degree (Class “B” violent felony) and one count of Criminal Possession of a Weapon in the Second Degree (Class “C” violent felony). Jurors rendered their verdict this afternoon after one hour of deliberation following a 2 ½ day trial, convicting the defendant of all counts in the indictment.

On February 13, 2022, at approximately 5:15 a.m., the defendant exited his apartment on Tonawanda Street in the City of Buffalo to confront the victim in the parking lot. The defendant suspected that the victim was breaking into vehicles. During the encounter, the defendant shot the victim once with his legally-owned handgun.

The victim, a 49-year-old homeless man, was taken by ambulance to ECMC to be treated for a gunshot wound to his left leg. The victim was hospitalized for two weeks and underwent surgery for a fractured femur.

The defendant was arraigned the following day in Buffalo City Court. He was released on $25,000 bail.

The evidence presented at trial showed that the victim, who was not known to the defendant, was not armed with any weapons during the incident.  

Morris faces a maximum of 25 years in prison when he is sentenced before Erie County Court Judge Susan Eagan on Tuesday, February 14, 2022 at 9:30 a.m. He remains released on previously posted bail.

The case was prosecuted by Assistant District Attorney Rebecca L. Schnirel of the Homicide Unit and Assistant District Attorney Thomas J. Comfort of the Felony Trials Bureau.