A Niagara Falls man who injured five people last year as he led a state trooper on a high-speed chase through downtown Buffalo was convicted Friday in Erie County Court.
Asad Hixon, 23, of Dudley Avenue, pleaded guilty to aggravated vehicular assault, a felony, and three misdemeanor counts of third-degree assault in the Nov. 3 chase that ended with his arrest near Delaware Avenue and Edward Street.
Hixon admitted he was high on marijuana and driving recklessly when the trooper tried to pull over his vehicle on Niagara Street for a seat-belt violation, according to Assistant District Attorney Christopher Gresham.
Hixon sped away toward Niagara Square, drove the wrong way on the square, headed north on Delaware, took West Mohawk Street to Franklin Street, continued north on Franklin to North Street, turned left on North and headed south on Delaware at 98 mph.
He ran a red light at Delaware and Edward, hitting a car headed west on Edward, then swerved into an SUV parked in front of The Mansion on Delaware Avenue. His vehicle rolled over, and he tried to run away but was caught by the trooper, assisted by the driver of the first car he hit.
Hixon suffered a gash in his head. His passenger, Dartanyon Robinson, 18, was seriously injured and was placed in a medically induced coma for several days.
Natalie Gilland, 32, who was in the first car Hixon hit, suffered non-life-threatening injuries, as did Kara Smith, 32, and Kristen Armstrong, 36, who were in the second car he struck. Their mother, Karen Smith, 61, suffered a broken leg and arm.
Hixon faces 3½ to seven years in prison when Judge Michael F. Pieteruszka sentences him Dec. 5.
The sentence will run concurrently with a five-year prison term Hixon received Sept. 17 in Niagara County Court after he tried to choke a woman and was found with a loaded gun Sept. 3, 2013 in Niagara Falls. He pleaded guilty to a weapon charge in that case.