RANDOLPH - A Randolph hunter convicted last year of accidentally shooting a school bus has been granted a new trial.
Cattaraugus County Judge Ronald Ploetz in a written decision Monday said prosecutors erred during closing arguments in the trial of William Squire.
Squire was convicted in July 2012 of second-degree reckless endangerment, fourth-degree criminal mischief and discharging a firearm, but has avoided jail time; a stay of judgment was issued following the trial pending an appeal.
According to police, Squire was in a tree stand hunting in November 2011 when he allegedly fired a shot that struck a bus traveling on Route 241 hundreds of yards away.
The shot struck above the driver's door, police said.
During closing arguments of the trial, a prosecutor with the Cattaraugus County District Attorney's Office told the jury, "This isn't the crime of the century. Nobody's going to jail because of this."
Squire was later sentenced to 1 year in jail by Ploetz, who on Monday said the comment wrongly suggested the jury could be more lax in its review.
See Wednesday's edition of The Post-Journal for a full story.