BALLSTON SPA, N.Y. (NEWS10) — A jury in Saratoga County convicted Rory L. Graham, 58, of Galway Monday on several domestic abuse charges stemming from incidents early last spring. Because Graham fled the area and was not physically present in court, he was tried and convicted in absentia.
Graham, who was out on bail, fled the court’s jurisdiction and Judge James A. Murphy III issued a bench warrant to take him into custody. After prosecutors showed that the defendant’s failure to appear was deliberate and willful, the judge granted their request to hold the trial in absentia.
Witness testimony from law enforcement, school personnel, and Graham’s ex-wife and daughter composed the week-long trial. Defense attorney Daniel Smalls represented Graham throughout from allegations that he violated a criminal order of protection from his ex-wife and committed domestic violence against her and their daughter for years.
After two days deliberating, the jury found Graham guilty on all counts: first-degree criminal contempt and two counts of aggravated family offense—class E felonies—plus second-degree criminal contempt, second-degree aggravated harassment, and endangering the welfare of a child—all class A misdemeanors. Judge Murphy scheduled Graham’s sentencing for March 12, when his convictions could earn him nearly 18 years in prison.