WATERLOO — A six-member Waterloo Village Court jury deliberated for a little more than five hours Monday before finding former Seneca County Manager John Sheppard guilty of a Class A misdemeanor charge of official misconduct.

The verdict followed a five-day trial last week before Village Justice Conrad Struzik.

Sheppard was indicted by a Seneca County grand jury in October 2019. It was alleged he disciplined county Emergency Management Director Melissa Taylor improperly.

Sheppard resigned as county manager in August 2019.

After he pleaded not guilty to the charge, Sheppard has been free on his own recognizance. He and his attorney, James Doyle, requested a jury trial. After numerous delays, the trial began Sept. 19.

The case was prosecuted by District Attorney Mark Sinkiewicz, who called six witnesses, including Taylor. Doyle called five witnesses.

Sheppard did not testify.

“It was a very long trial for a misdemeanor charge, but the jury was attentive and I believe justice was served,” Sinkiewicz wrote in an email to the Times.

Struzik ordered a pre-sentence report. A date for sentencing will be scheduled later.

The sentencing range for a Class A misdemeanor is probation, conditional discharge, community service, or up to a year in jail.

Doyle could not be reached for comment regarding the possibility of an appeal.

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