Jury reaches verdict in CDTA bus attack trial


    UPDATE: A jury reached a verdict Wednesday in the CDTA bus attack trial.

    Former UAlbany students Ariel Agudio and Asha Burwell were found not guilty of assault and attempted assault, but both were found guilty of two counts of falsely reporting an incident.

    Asha Burwell was also found not guilty of harassment.

    None of the charges were felonies.

    "Don't lose heart, at this point it's important the people who lost heart initially, need to understand in part now they've been vindicated and the rest of that process is yet to come," said Burwell's attorney Frederick Brewington.

    "They've treated this as if it were the crime of the century from the beginning, and its not, it's not even a crime," said Agudio's attorney Mark Mishler.

    A third woman, 21-year-old Alexis Briggs, pleaded guilty for her role in the CDTA bus incident in January 2016, to one count of disorderly conduct, a violation- that comes with 100 hours of community service.

    “Falsely reported incidents create immeasurable harm, not the least of which is the doubt, cynicism, and suspicion a person with a legitimate claim will likely receive in the future,” commented DA David Soares.

    “It also means expending precious law enforcement resources investigating falsehoods instead of helping real victims. From the beginning, the Office of the Albany County District Attorney has insisted that any restorative justice resolution must begin with an apology for the harm caused by these young ladies. Only one chose to apologize for falsely representing the incidents and accepted responsibility. We respect the decision of the jury after what was undoubtedly a very difficult case," said Soares.

    Aguido and Burwell were released under the supervision of the Department of Probation after the verdict today.

    They each face up to two years in jail when sentenced on June 16th.


    ALBANY, NY (WRGB)-- The jury is still deciding the fate of two former UAlbany students accused of getting into a fight on a CDTA bus, then lying to police about what happened.

    The jurors began the day Wednesday asking to rewatch certain surveillance video from the CDTA bus.

    They also asked for cell phone video.

    After watching that- the jury then asked to hear the 911 calls as well as the testimony from the responding officer.

    Defense attorneys have said the women, Ariel Agudio and Asha Burwell acted in self defense and believed that they were targets of racial bias, saying comments were made that were racially motivated.

    The prosecutor says the women were aggressors, and the narrative they originally gave was false.

    A third woman charged pleaded guilty for her role in that CDTA bus incident on January 30 2016, one count of disorderly conduct, a violation- that comes with community service.

    Deliberations are set to resume Thursday morning.

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