Man who accidentally shot woman in the face headed to county court

Robert William France arrives at disrtict justice office in Plains on Oct. 9 for his arrignment after he was arrested for a shooting at the Turkey Hill in Plains. Clark Van Orden | Times Leader

PLAINS TWP. — A man who says he accidentally shot a woman in the face with a .357 magnum revolver is headed to higher court.

Court documents indicate that Robert William France, 29, of Scranton, appeared before Magisterial District Judge Diana Malast for a preliminary hearing on Tuesday morning. According to the criminal docket, France waived felony charges of aggravated assault and carrying a firearm without a license.

A second felony county of aggravated assault and a misdemeanor charge of reckless endangerment were withdrawn.

Township police said Sylvia Murati was struck by the round just after 3 a.m on Oct. 9 while seated inside a Chrysler 300 parked at a gasoline island outside Turkey Hill on South Main Street.

France said he was seated in the car’s front passenger seat when he retrieved the handgun from the rear seat. France said the gun went off as he was handling it.

Immediately after the shooting, France and others drove Murati to Commonwealth Health Wilkes-Barre General Hospital, which transferred her to the trauma unit at Geisinger Wyoming Valley Medical Center in Plains Township. Her medical condition was not immediately known.

France told Malast that he was “so sorry this happened” after he was arraigned by Malast on Oct. 9.

The formal arraignment for France was scheduled for Jan. 14 at 9 a.m. at the Luzerne County Courthouse.

Court documents also indicate that, per an agreement, France’s bail was reduced from $50,000 to $20,000.

Robert William France arrives at disrtict justice office in Plains on Oct. 9 for his arrignment after he was arrested for a shooting at the Turkey Hill in Plains. Clark Van Orden | Times Leader
http://timesleader.com/wp-content/uploads/2015/10/web1_TTL101015shooting1.jpgRobert William France arrives at disrtict justice office in Plains on Oct. 9 for his arrignment after he was arrested for a shooting at the Turkey Hill in Plains. Clark Van Orden | Times Leader

By Travis Kellar

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