A state appellate court has upheld the convictions of a Carthage man found guilty at trial of stabbing a man outside a downtown Watertown restaurant in 2009.
Miguel A. Jaramillo, 37, was found guilty in January 2011 in Jefferson County Court of first-degree assault, fourth-degree criminal possession of a weapon and first-degree perjury. He is serving a state prison sentence of up to 18 years at Attica Correctional Facility.
A jury ruled that he stabbed Lloyd P. Little, Sackets Harbor, with a knife on Oct. 18, 2009, outside Ticos Mex Mex Grill, 65 Public Square. The jury also found him guilty of lying to a grand jury investigating the matter.
Mr. Little, a bouncer at Ticos, had attempted to intervene after seeing an argument between Mr. Jaramillo and his girlfriend and testified that he also observed Mr. Jaramillo threaten an unidentified customer with a knife. He grabbed Mr. Jaramillos wrist and, after a struggle, Mr. Jaramillo fell to the ground. When he rose, he lunged at Mr. Little and stabbed him in the abdomen, causing a 6- to 8-inch-long wound. The knife also lacerated Mr. Littles liver. He has recovered.
Mr. Jaramillo, who acted as his own attorney at trial, had asked the Appellate Division, Fourth Department, to dismiss the counts, arguing that the trial evidence was legally insufficient to establish that Mr. Little had suffered a serious physical injury, a necessary element to support a first-degree assault conviction. In a decision released Friday, the appellate court ruled that evidence weighed by the jury did sustain the count, finding that Mr. Littles injuries were serious.
Mr. Jaramillo also contended, among other things, that County Court erred by not allowing him to substitute counsel after he disagreed with public defenders over the direction of his case. He launched federal lawsuits against the countys public defender and district attorney offices, as well as the sheriffs department, all of which subsequently were dismissed. The appellate court ruled that the suit against the public defender was an apparent attempt to create a conflict of interest and did not warrant substitution of counsel.
The court also ruled that his punishment was not unduly harsh or severe.