Homicide suspect pleads not guilty

Figura

NIAGARA FALLS — The homicide suspect captured Thursday near Wyoming County was arraigned for murder Friday in a virtual court appearance.

Matthew H. Figura Jr. 35, pleaded not guilty to second-degree murder and second-degree criminal possession of a weapon, according to The Buffalo News. He remains jailed in lieu of $500,000 bail.

Niagara Falls police issued an alert Thursday morning after Figura allegedly gunned down a person at the Niagara Metals scrapyard, where they both worked. He then fled the area in a pickup.

Figura was described by police as armed and dangerous. He later allegedly tried to steal a vehicle in the town of Sardinia, Erie County, which prompted Wyoming County sheriff’s patrols in Java and Arcade, in the county’s western portion.

Wyoming County Sheriff’s Capt. Edward Till was patrolling about 12:55 p.m. in the seasonal section of Wilkens Road in Holland when he encountered Figura trying to exit the Erie County Forestry area. He followed Figura’s vehicle for more than three miles until backup units arrived.

A felony traffic stop was then conducted on Curriers Sardinia Road in Sardinia, Erie County. It included personnel from the Wyoming and Erie county sheriff’s offices, along with Arcade police.

Figura was taken into custody without incident.

Initial reports in the minutes after the accident said Figura was arrested in Arcade, which is located nearby.

The shooting victim’s identity had not been released. A motive for the shooting still wasn’t known as of Friday evening.

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