SIOUX CITY | The sentencing of a man found guilty of shooting a juvenile was delayed Thursday after the defense attorney withdrew from the case.
Darius Wright, 21, had been scheduled to be sentenced on charges of assault with intent to inflict serious injury, willful injury and first-degree robbery. Instead, District Judge Patrick Tott approved attorney Matt Pittinger's request to withdraw from the case.
Pittinger told Tott that Wright did not want his representation any longer.
"He feels that I have not represented him to the best of my ability," Pittinger said.
Tott said he would appoint a new attorney for Wright and then reschedule hearings for his motion for a new trial and sentencing at a later date.
Wright had waived his right to a jury trial and had his case heard by Tott, who found him guilty in July. In a motion for a new trial, Pittinger wrote that Wright believed he had not been made fully aware of what waiving his right to a jury trial meant. Wright also said Pittinger failed to inform him about mandatory sentencing provisions that he might face if found guilty.
Tott found Wright guilty of brandishing a handgun and robbing three people of a bag of snacks they had bought at a convenience store on Feb. 10. Later in the night, a friend of one of the robbery victims went to 423 16th St. to confront Wright about the robbery, and Wright shot him in the chest and hip, causing a collapsed lung and broken ribs.
Wright, who had been charged with attempted murder but was found guilty of the lesser assault charge, faces up to 35 years in prison with a mandatory minimum of 17.5 years.
A jury found Wright's co-defendant, Tykell Robinson, guilty of first-degree robbery. He awaits sentencing.