Tonawanda Man Indicted on Manslaughter Charge for Killing Victim During Fight

Modified: August 2, 2022 2:18pm

8/2/2022

Erie County District Attorney John J. Flynn announces that 22-year-old Michael Atkinson of Town of Tonawanda was arraigned yesterday morning before Erie County Court Judge Kenneth Case on an indictment charging him with one count of Manslaughter 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).

It is alleged that on April 20, 2022, at approximately 1:20 a.m., the defendant shot and stabbed the victim during a fight on James Avenue near River Road in the Town of Tonawanda. The victim, 19-year-old Harith Mohamed Alkahalaf, died from his injuries nearby a short time later. The defendant was taken in a private vehicle to Kenmore Mercy where he was treated for minor stab wounds.

Atkinson was held on $100,000 bail. A return court date has not been scheduled at this time.

If convicted of the charge, Atkinson faces a maximum sentence of 25 years in prison.  

DA Flynn commends the Town of Tonawanda Police Department for their work in this investigation.

The case is being prosecuted by Assistant District Attorney Ryan D. Haggerty of the Homicide Unit.   

As are all persons accused of a crime, the defendant is presumed innocent until proven guilty in a court of law.