In a courtroom filled with Toledo police officers, a former Toledo man who tried to shoot two of those officers was sentenced today to 22 years in prison.
Norman Conner, 32, of Columbus, was found guilty last week of two counts of felonious assault with firearms specifications following a bench trial in Lucas County Common Pleas Court. Visiting Judge Charles Wittenberg, who presided over the trial, acquitted Conner on a third count of felonious assault.
On Feb. 5, 2011, Conner was a passenger in a car driven by Raishaun Williams when police stopped the vehicle and Conner reached for a loaded 9mm handgun that was under the seat. He fired one round that struck Mr. Williams in the leg, and, during a struggle with officers outside the car, he fired another round that nearly struck an officer.
Judge Wittenberg noted that the offense was “very, very serious” and brought to life “probably the worst fear” an officer and an officer’s family have.
“Every time a police officer stops an automobile, he or she does not know what to expect, and with the proliferation of handguns on the streets, I think the odds of someone in the car having a handgun have increased dramatically over the last several years,” the judge said.
At sentencing, Judge Wittenberg ordered that Conner’s new prison sentence be served concurrently with an eight-year sentence he already is serving for his conviction in federal court for being a felon in possession of a firearm.