A judge sent Daniel O. Chadderdon, 18, to prison Tuesday for 7 1/3 to 22 years for trying to kill taxi driver Anthony Sebastian by driving the cab over his head, breaking every bone in his face, in a robbery in the Town of Tonawanda last year.
Acting State Supreme Court Justice Joseph P. McCarthy spoke of the "overwhelming" evidence against Chadderdon, a runaway from a state youth home at the time of the attack.
McCarthy found Chadderdon guilty of attempted murder, robbery, assault and criminal use of a car as a weapon for driving over Sebastian's head with the taxi shortly after midnight Aug. 20, 1995, and then stealing the taxi.
"I am innocent," Chadderdon repeatedly told the judge. "I did not try to kill (him). The crime that was committed was not done by me."
Chadderdon, originally of Medina, had escaped from a state youth home in Binghamton in July 1995.
All of the bones in Sebastian's face were broken in the attack, his larynx was crushed and his windpipe damaged. Sitting in the courtroom Tuesday, Sebastian, 53, scoffed at the prison term.
"He should be doing the whole 25 (years)," that could have been imposed for the conviction, Sebastian said.
Sebastian, who still has nine metal plates in his face and three in his neck to stabilize his features, said he needs more plastic surgery and is trying to return to work full time as a cabbie.
Sebastian said he is bitter because he cannot be financially compensated by the state because Chadderdon was a runaway from a state Division for Youth home at the time of the crime.
Even 15 months after the incident, "it continues just like a bad dream," Sebastian said.
He said he tries to drive a cab daily but has to leave work after a couple of hours because his nerves are shattered and he has trouble driving safely.
Sebastian picked up Chadderdon as a fare shortly before the parking lot incident and drove him to the Benjamin Franklin School parking lot at Parkhurst Boulevard and Lincoln Parkway in the Town of Tonawanda where Chadderdon grabbed Sebastian from behind, choked him, robbed him of $61 and threw him out of the cab.
Chadderdon drove over the victim's head before driving off, Prosecutor Gerald W. Schaffer Jr. said.