State’s highest court agrees Cicero murder suspect’s indictment should be tossed

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ALBANY, NY (WSYR-TV) — New York’s Court of Appeals this week upheld two lower court rulings dismissing the murder indictment of a retired elementary school teacher accused of killing his brother-in-law after a night of drinking.

James Ball was indicted for the murder of Christopher Ross in the early morning hours of July 4, 2017 at Ball’s home on Chinkapin Circle in Cicero.

The two men had been drinking and got into a physical altercation.

James Ball and his wife maintain they forced Ross to leave, which he did, only to return to try and get back in the house.

They say at that point James Ball had gone to get a gun, load it, and shot Ross in self-defense.

The original murder indictment was dismissed by an Onondaga County Court judge who ruled prosecutors failed to inform the Grand Jury members that they could consider the law allows justifiable use of physical force in defense of premises.

They were only instructed on justifiable use of physical force in defense of a person.

The Onondaga District Attorney’s office says it will present the case to another Grand Jury as soon as the state permits those panels to meet.

Ball remains free on bail. There is still a felony complaint in place against Ball on a murder charge.


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