A man who stabbed a neighbor in an argument over a third party's barking dog was sentenced to five years in prison Tuesday by Niagara County Judge Matthew J. Murphy III.
Gerald J. Stauder, 67, of the Dorwood mobile home park in Wilson, angrily protested the sentencing, claiming he thought he was to be sentenced to time served since the Oct. 17 near-fatal attack on Dwayne S. Klumpp, 50.
But the outcome wasn't all bad for Stauder. As a result of coverage of the case in The Buffalo News, he was reunited with a daughter he hadn't seen since she was 2 years old.
The woman, who lives in Erie County, was unable to come to court Tuesday, but she was on hand Feb. 28, when Stauder pleaded guilty to second-degree assault.
At that time, the woman, Nicole Elizabeth Krieger, said she read of Stauder's case in The News and visited him in jail.
She was the result of a brief live-in relationship in South Buffalo between Stauder and her mother, who was separated from her first husband at the time. They later broke up, contact with Stauder was cut off, and Nicole was raised in Williamsville.
"I have a 35-year-old daughter who just came back into my life after 33 years," Stauder said Tuesday. "The lady put her up for adoption. I've got grandchildren I've never seen."
Krieger said Stauder had been searching for her, but under her mother's first married name. She later remarried, but Stauder didn't know that.
Meanwhile, Klumpp said he became embroiled in an argument between Stauder and a third man over the latter's barking dog. Klumpp said he could hear them yelling at each other for about 20 minutes in the tightly packed mobile home park, so he went outside and told them to quiet down.
"The next thing I know, he's running into his house and coming back out and sticking a knife in me," Klumpp said.
Klumpp was stabbed in the left side of the abdomen with a kitchen knife with a 6- or 7-inch blade.
Murphy said he sometimes gives older offenders a break on sentencing on the theory that they might not commit any more violent crimes.
But he said Stauder has a lengthy criminal record, so he ordered the five-year prison term, plus three years of post-release supervision.
"He sentenced me to five years? What happened to the plea deal?" Stauder asked Assistant Public Defender Alan J. Roscetti. "I want a trial. I want to withdraw my plea. I'm supposed to go home today. I got children to see."
The plea deal only reduced the maximum sentence from 15 years to seven, and Murphy had made no sentencing commitment.
Roscetti said he told Stauder that, based on experience, he expected a local jail sentence of no more than a year.