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Man gets decades in prison in attack that blinded NY officer

June 9, 2022 GMT

ROCHESTER, N.Y. (AP) — A man convicted of blinding a Rochester police officer by beating and stabbing him was sentenced Wednesday to 40 years to life in prison.

A jury convicted Keith Williams, 30, last month of attempted aggravated murder of a police officer and other charges in the October 2019 attack on Officer Dennison Wright.

“Although this man took my eyesight, he will not take another thing from me and my family,” Wright said at the Wednesday’s sentencing. “I believe I’m a stronger man now than I was even that day.”

Wright was attacked while responding to a domestic disturbance call at Williams’ home. Some civilians helped Wright restrain the attacker after hearing the officer cry for help.

Judge Alex Renzi told Williams he was “possessed by something very evil,” saying that the officer’s body camera captured ”the most brutal and graphic video I’ve ever seen.”

Williams’ lawyer, Grazina Harper, said a mental health crisis precipitated the events that led to the attack, the Democrat and Chronicle reported. She said Williams regrets what he did.

Wright had been a police officer for 23 years before the attack.

“He honorably dedicated his entire life to protecting and serving the community and deserved better from those he served,” Monroe County District Attorney Sandra Doorley said in a statement.