Jury Returns Guilty Verdict In Murder Trial

Modified: March 22, 2017 10:49am

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Erie County District Attorney John J. Flynn announces that a jury has found 50-year-old John Avent of the Town of Tonawanda guilty of Murder in the Second Degree before Erie County Court Judge Kenneth F. Case. 

The jury returned the verdict after about two hours of deliberations following the nearly weeklong trial. 

The panel convicted the defendant of fatally stabbing his girlfriend, 51-year-old Roberta Rybinski in their Newell Avenue apartment in the Town of Tonawanda between March 3 and March 8, 2016. 

Avent faces 25 years to life in prison when he is sentenced by Judge Case on April 21, 2017 at 9:30 a.m. 

DA Flynn commends Town of Tonawanda Police Detectives Timothy Connolly, Jeffrey Campanella, Gary Reinhardt, Thomas Oswald and Brian Moline for their thorough investigative work. 

Assistant District Attorneys Gary W. Hackbush and Matthew S. Szalkowski prosecuted the case.