Orange County judge rescinds plea deal for man who admitted to hate crime

William Ryan, 60, had pleaded guilty to menacing as a hate crime last August after he was seen on cellphone video threatening a Black off-duty Town of Wallkill police lieutenant and his son with a box cutter during a road rage incident.

Blaise Gomez

Mar 27, 2023, 9:48 PM

Updated 426 days ago

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A hate crime case expected to be resolved Monday with a sentencing took a turn when the defendant showed up five hours late, and the judge took the plea deal off the table.
William Ryan was supposed to be sentenced to six months in jail, but now the case is going to trial after he lied to the judge about why he was late and gave two different excuses. 
The 60-year-old originally pleaded guilty to menacing as a hate crime last August after he was seen on cellphone video threatening a Black off-duty Town of Wallkill police lieutenant, Robert McLymore, and his son with a box cutter during a road rage incident in the City of Newburgh. 
Ryan was seen at their car window last June with the weapon and was heard yelling racial slurs. He also falsely claimed to be a state trooper. 
During court Monday, Ryan said he “fibbed” about why he was late and was on alcohol and Valium during the crime. 
Prosecutors said Ryan, who’s from Newburgh, had six prior convictions for misdemeanors and felonies. 
Judge William DeProspo took the original offer off the table, and Ryan chose to take the case to trial rather than accepting a longer sentence. 
News 12 spoke to McLymore about the ordeal after court. 
“It was a shocking twist. I wasn’t expecting what I heard today, especially from his side, but I look forward to whatever it is to come as far as with the trial," said McLymore. 
Ryan at first apologized in court but then said he’s not guilty after the judge referred to him as a racist and said he’d sentence him to two to six years in prison under the original guilty plea. 
The case is now scheduled to go to trial April 3. 
Ryan remains free without bail and said he’s living in a hotel.


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