SCHOHARIE – A Central Bridge man who admitted a fatal stabbing, but claimed self-defense, was convicted this week of manslaughter.
Kevin Hodgins, 30, stood trial in Schoharie County in connection with the April 6 stabbing death of 29-year-old Zachary George inside a Church Street apartment in Central Bridge.
The jury convicted Hodgins of second-degree manslaughter. He faces up to 5 to 15 years in state prison at his February sentencing.
The same jury acquitted Hodgins of the more-serious second-degree murder count, which would have carried up to 25 years to life in prison, if convicted of that.
Hodgins was arrested immediately after the stabbing. It followed an argument earlier in the evening among others connected to Hodgins and George, state police have said. A conversation about the earlier incident escalated into the knifing.
Hodgins’ attorney, Mark Gaylord, argued early on that Hodgins went to speak with someone about the earlier incident, then one man lunged at Hodgins with a fist. Hodgins suffered bruises as a result, Gaylord said.
Hodgins then reached for a knife he’d brought, slashed with it and hit George in the neck.
Gaylord could not be reached for comment Thursday.
- Attorney: Self-defense claim possible in Central Bridge death, April 9, 2018
- Police: Fight in Schoharie County ends in homicide, April 7, 2018
Schoharie County District Attorney Susan J. Mallery commended the jury for wading through the complicated legal area of self defense, which doesn’t generally allow for deadly force to be used in response to non-deadly force.
She said she will wait for a presentence report before determining what she will recommend at sentencing.