Dawn Nguyen pleaded guilty to three-count federal indictment

Updated: 06/26/2014 5:17 PM
Created: 06/26/2014 8:58 AM WHEC.com
By: Brett Davidsen

For the first time, the only person charged in connection with the West Webster tragedy admits she lied when buying the guns used to shoot four firefighters.

Dawn Nguyen pleaded guilty to federal charges today. Police say she bought the guns for William Spengler who used them to shoot four men. Two of the, Tomasz Kaczowka and Mike Chiapperini, died.

This plea brings the case another step toward closure for the firefighters involved and their loved ones.

U.S. Attorney William Hochul said, “She knew when she said on a form that Gander Mountain and frankly, the federal government requires for the purchase of a gun, that the guns were for her...that she lied. She said in court today instead those guns were going to William Spengler all along."

Already convicted of state charges of falsifying documents, Dawn Nguyen today avoided a trial and pled guilty to a three count federal indictment.

In 2010, Nguyen filled out paperwork at Gander Mountain in Henrietta to buy the guns used by William Spengler in the West Webster tragedy. In court she admitted she lied on the paperwork when she said the guns were for her.

Brett Davidsen: What would you say her state of mind is at this point?
Nguyen’s attorney, Matthew Parrinello: "I mean, she's tired. Obviously she's disappointed, but she understands the system and I think she's getting to the point where she just wants to get her time done with and move on with life."

Nguyen acknowledged to the judge she turned those guns over to Spengler knowing he was a felon. He would eventually set a fire outside his home on Lake Road in Webster on Christmas Eve 2012 and then used the guns to shoot at firefighters who responded to the call, killing two and injuring two others.

One of the injured, Ted Scardino, was in court for today's plea but declined comment.
Past chief, David Davis, was sitting next to Scardino and felt it was important to see this chapter close. “We had a major loss of a couple of our members. Two others were injured and just a presence for the fire department." Also killed was Spengler’s sister, Cheryl.

As for Nguyen's sentencing, the maximum she could face is 30 years on these convictions. However, the federal guidelines suggest it should be between 18 to 24 months. But the judge is not bound by those guidelines.

She will be sentenced August 28.

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