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Newport man gets 20 years in prison for shooting neighbor during fight; juror admits pressure to convict

By By GARY LIBERATORE

HERKIMER, N.Y. (WKTV) - 20 years - that's what a Newport man received for the attempted murder of his neighbor.

It was an argument at a trailer park that got out of hand. Now, one of the neighbors is heading to jail for the next two decades.

Michael Caldwell still claims his intent was not to kill his neighbor that night last July.

The 42-year-old Caldwell now has a black patch over his left eye. He was beaten by his neighbor, 33-year-old Daniel Uebele at the White Creek Trailer Park on July 12, 2008.

After being hit in the head, Caldwell called 911.

He couldn't see out of his left eye - and never will - and he was high on cocaine, marijuana and alcohol at the time.

While on the phone with the 911 operator, he had someone in his home get him a rifle.

Caldwell then went back outside, traveling 100 feet and shot the neighbor that beat him. Two of the four bullets fired went in and out of Uebele's legs.

No blood vessels were hit and Uebele's wounds are healing.

After the 20-year sentence was handed down, Caldwell's attorney immediately filed an appeal, stating Caldwell didn't intend to murder Uebele.

And because he was under extreme emotional distress at the time, he believes Caldwell will get a new trial upon appeal.

"Arguably, the dash am showed when he was approaching or attempting to approach the trooper upon arrival," said defense attorney Don Manley. "Mr. Caldwell was staggering back and forth, he was incoherent, he was mumbling, you could not understand Mr. Caldwell clearly and based on that, that's why we argued extreme emotional disturbance."

Even though the case is over, the state police still refuse to release the dash cam video.

Also, since the jury's verdict, one juror did send a letter to the court stating he felt pressured by the other jurors to come to a decision and expressed there was reasonable doubt.

Caldwell's attorney says it could take a couple of years before Caldwell's appeal is heard.

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