Injured deputy unable to identify shooter in robbery and attempted murder trial

By JOLEEN FERRIS

UTICA, N.Y. (WKTV) - Injured Oneida County Sheriff's Deputy Michael Burger walked to the witness stand in County Court Thursday using crutches and wearing a large boot on his right foot.

Burger testified about the day NBT Bank in Rome was robbed last July, and the subsequent shooting which shattered his right ankle and now gives him pain 24 hours a day.

Deputy Burger could not identify suspect Brian Brown as the man who shot him; simply that it was a short, black man with a thin build.

Earlier in the day, jurors in Brian Brown's attempted murder and robbery trial heard Brown say during a videotaped interview with police that he never meant to hit the deputy when he fired at him; that he only wanted to get away. But Deputy Burger testified that he got a much different feeling from the man who was shooting at him at the woods' edge on Hazard Road in Marcy last July. Under prosecution questioning, Deputy Burger said it worried him that the suspect didn't just run into the woods once their car chase ended.

"Oh, yes, it concerned me greatly...because I thought, 'he's trying to kill me'", said Burger.

The prosecution will call two more witnesses to the stand on Friday. They're expected to be quick. When they're finished, most likely late morning, defendant Brian Brown could take the stand. He and his attorney can wait right up until the end of prosecution testimony to decide.

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