Acting Village Justice Serving Time for False Assault Claim

- Dmitry Gurovich

Across the country in Seneca County, New York, a former Waterloo justice was sentenced to six months in jail and five years probation for falsely claiming that he was assaulted.

In August of 2013, Roger Barto claimed that he was hit over the head with a toilet seat and strangled as he was locking up the Waterloo Municipal Building. When police arrived, they found what appeared to be a shattered toilet tank lid at the scene.

Barto was transported to a Rochester hospital where he then spent nine days on a pain pump. Doctors and nurses testified during Barto’s trial, however, that the acting village justice had not sustained any internal or external injuries from a blow to the head, choking, or any type of assault.

Seeking Access to Prescription Painkillers

Before the alleged incident Barto had been on prescription painkillers for gout and lower back pain. He had also made 20 to 30 previous insurance claims for alleged accidents. During the trial the jury heard substantial evidence which indicated that Barto’s false assault claim was made in order for him to obtain a lifetime supply of pain medication.

In mid-October 2015 Barto was convicted of falsely reporting an incident, defrauding the government, falsifying business records and insurance fraud. He paid back the nearly $42,000 spent on his care at the hospital and is now serving a six month sentence and faces five years probation. 

Have You Been Falsely Accused? 

Our law firm Gurovich, Berk & Associates has defended numerous individuals who have been falsely accused of assault. If you have been falsely accused of assault, the first step you should take is to: 

  • Preserve any and all evidence. This includes gathering contact information from anyone who may be able to provide an eye witness account
  • Document your case. Write down every detail about the event including any background information you feel is relevant
  • Retain an attorney who specializes in criminal defense. We will educate you on your rights and provide you with ongoing legal counsel to ensure the best outcome of your case

Individuals who have been falsely accused of assault face the same challenges and consequences as any criminal defendant. It is imperative that you hire an experienced and skilled criminal defense attorney who will aggressively protect your rights. 

We invite you to call us at Gurovich, Berk & Associates today to discuss your case at (213) 385-1555.