An Amsterdam man charged after a fatal stabbing outside a city tavern last November faces a state prison term of up to 12 years following his guilty plea Wednesday.
Jose Merced, 30, pleaded guilty in Montgomery County Court to second-degree manslaughter, according to a court clerk.
Merced turned himself in to police as they investigated the Nov. 4 death of Daniel Mowrey, 24, who went to Skiba’s Tavern with his girlfriend to play a game of pool.
Merced admitted to police that he stabbed Mowrey just after 11 p.m. outside the James Street tavern but said he did so in self-defense.
Mowrey’s fiancée, Roseana Leon, told The Daily Gazette in an earlier interview that she and Mowrey had left a birthday celebration for her father and were driving her cousin home when he suggested they stop in for a game of pool.
Leon said that one of the patrons was overtly staring at her and at one point tried to kiss her, infuriating Mowrey.
Authorities said Mowrey attacked Merced outside the bar a while later, putting him in a headlock.
Montgomery County District Attorney James “Jed” Conboy said witness statements indicated that two friends of Merced’s were with him and were trying to pry Mowrey off of him.
Merced told police he was being choked so he pulled out a pocket knife and stabbed Mowrey.
Leon said her fiancé was stabbed in the back, in the neck and in the heart. She said she tried to help Mowrey off the ground as other bar patrons stood around watching and smoking cigarettes.
Mowrey was a 2003 graduate of Broadalbin-Perth High School and worked at Quandt’s Food Service Distributors.
Merced will be sentenced as a second-felony offender to a state prison term of 6 to 12 years on Aug. 23, according to the court.
Merced served a state prison term of 1 to 3 years on a second-degree attempted burglary conviction and was discharged from prison in 2008.
Categories: Schenectady County