NORWICH – For the second time in a span of five years Gregory Frank Huzinec Jr., also known by the street name “Ziggy,” is accused of attacking and injuring a Norwich resident with a deadly weapon.
Huzinec, 42, is a convicted violent felon who was released from prison on July 6, 2020. About a year later on July 25, 2021, while still on parole, police say he stabbed a Norwich pedestrian several times during an attempted daylight robbery.
Appearing in Chenango County Court last week, First Assistant District Attorney Christine M. Rudy said video recordings, with audio, captured parts of the attack that occurred at about 5:25 p.m along American Avenue in Norwich. American Ave. is located on the same block as the police department, post office, and is next to the Norwich City Court.
Rudy said on an audio recording the victim can be heard shouting, “You just stabbed me!”
She said the attack was over a few dollars, but after slashing the victim in the chest, neck and back, Huzinec fled the scene empty handed.
The victim told investigators Huzinec spotted him counting out cash at a nearby eatery before he was attacked.
Norwich Detective Sergeant Reuben Roach said Huzinec demanded money, and when the victim refused he was attacked with a knife.
“A struggle ensued and the victim did sustain several stab wounds to the neck and chest,” said Roach. “Norwich Police officers were on the scene within minutes of the 911 call.”
The victim was rushed to Wilson Memorial Hospital in serious condition and later recovered.
Police said Huzinec has prior convictions in multiple states, including Pennsylvania, New Jersey, New York and Maryland.
One of those prior cases involved a similar local incident that occurred in downtown Norwich in 2016.
Huzinec was accused of burglarizing an apartment armed with a knife and gun on July 7, 2016 along Lackawanna Avenue.
According to the Norwich police investigators at the time, Huzinec “duct taped and hogtied” the home occupant, threatened to kill them and pistol whipped the victim, before fleeing the scene with stolen property.
In 2016 a Chenango County grand jury indicted Huzinec on four felony counts: first degree robbery, first degree burglary, second degree kidnapping, and second degree assault.
At the time Chenango County Judge Frank Revoir Jr. noted the seriousness of the charges, saying, “I do note that these offenses carry out a potential sentence of 25 years if convicted."
However, the charges in the case were eventually reduced, and Huzinec was allowed to plead guilty to felony first degree attempted robbery on Oct. 28, 2016, in a deal offered by the Chenango County District Attorney's Office. He was sentenced to four years in prison, with two and a half years post-release supervision.
Huzinec is currently being held without bail at the Chenango County Correctional Facility for violating his parole.
Judge Revoir also ordered he be held on $100,000 cash bail over the 2021 charges, in case the parole violation is fully served before trial or removed by New York State.
A Chenango County grand jury has again indicted him for multiple violent felonies including: first and second degree assault, first and second degree attempted robbery, and third degree criminal possession of a weapon.
Attorney F. Paul Battisti was defense counsel at the hearing. During the hearing Huzinec informed the court he did not intend to testify in his own defense at trial.
All defendants are presumed innocent until proven guilty in a court of law.