Binghamton man sentenced to 25 years to life for murder by hammer attack
A man who admitted killing a Binghamton resident by repeatedly hitting him in the head with a hammer has received the maximum sentence for second-degree murder.
According to the Broome County District Attorney’s Office, Austin Whitney, 30, of Binghamton, has been convicted in connection with the death of Anthony Cebula.
The body of Cebula, 60, was found in a second-floor bedroom of her First Ward home by a relative on January 4. Police investigators say the attacker attempted to set fire to the residence at 1 Chelsea Square.
Whitney was on the run for about a week after Cebula’s death. Investigators eventually received a tip that the suspect was seen on Grand Avenue at Vestal Center. He fled into a wooded area when police spotted him walking along Route 26.
Units from the Vestal and Binghamton Police Departments, along with Broome County Sheriff’s Deputies and state troopers searched for Whitney for approximately 30 minutes.
Authorities said Cebula suffered lacerations as he tried to evade police.
In a press release, Broome County District Attorney Michael Korchak said:
The community must be protected from violent individuals like Whitney. We are pleased that the Court accepted our recommendation that the maximum sentence under New York State law of 25 years to life was warranted.
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