NORWICH – Monday afternoon, a jury began deliberating and by Tuesday morning at 10:10 returned with convictions on several of the top felony charges against James F. Bush – including burglary, criminal possession of a weapon and attempted robbery, all in the first degree.
First Assistant District Attorney Stephen M. Dunshee said Bush now faces up to 25 years to life in prison because he is a “discretionary persistent” offender with multiple convictions in his past, including two terms in state prison.
“He is what you call a career criminal and the community will be a safer place without him in it,” said Dunshee.
Dunshee thanked the jury for their service in the eight-day trial which had been unexpectedly draw out a week longer because the attorneys exhausted the original jury pool, he said.
The jury convicted Bush, 46, of Norwich, for his role in a July 2007 fatal robbery attempt where he conspired with another assailant, Joshua Richheimer, of Pittsfield to steal several hundred dollars in cash and several pounds of marijuana from a Sherburne drug dealer at around 9:45 p.m. July 24.
A subsequent investigation by the Chenango County Sheriff’s Office said Richheimer was killed in the attack by the homeowner, Robert Reynolds, in self defense. Reynolds, who admitted in court to selling between 1 to 3 pounds of marijuana a week, said he kept a loaded gun in his home after having been robbed twice before at gunpoint...