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Sheriff's Deputy Acquitted of Rape Charge

By Mark Scott

Buffalo, NY – A judge Wednesday found Erie County Sheriff's Deputy George Avery not guilty of sexual assaulting a prisoner he had arrested last January.

County Court Judge Sheila DiTullio presided over the non-jury trial. She said she found some of the witnesses in the case "not credible."

A 24-year-old man accused Avery of raping him following his arrest on traffic charges. Avery's attorney, Philip Marshall, had argued during the trial that the deputy's accuser had a history of making false claims.

After the verdict was delivered, Avery said the accusation and trial was the "worst tribulation he could go through." He then thanked his attorney.

Avery has been on unpaid suspension. It's not yet known if sheriff's officials will lift that suspension.