Upstate New York man sentenced to 38 years in prison for torturing, mutilating acquaintance

NY man gets 38 years for mutilating acquaintance

CANTON, N.Y. —A prison inmate was sentenced Monday to 38 years in prison for torturing and mutilating an acquaintance while on probation for a bar stabbing.

Harry Klages II pleaded guilty to assault in June on the eve of his trial for attempted murder in the January 2008 attack on Andrew Lesperance. The 51-year-old victim has undergone multiple surgeries to relearn simple tasks, from picking up a fork to walking unaided. He is now blind in one eye.

Before sentencing, Klages told the judge: “I will be happy to serve my years and look forward to getting out into the community.”

Klages, 27, mutilated Lesperance’s eyes and genitals and sliced open his abdomen after a party at Klages’ apartment in Massena, 160 miles north of Syracuse on the U.S.-Canada border. He claimed he attacked Lesperance in response to “sexual misconduct” but prosecutor Nicole Duve contends that never happened.

Police were called when an intoxicated Klages, who had been smoking marijuana and possibly using other drugs, called his father to say he had done something “he wasn’t very proud of.” Duve said it appeared Lesperance had only met Klages that night.

His sentence will begin once he finishes serving 16 months to four years for two attempted assault convictions. In addition, he was ordered to pay more than $157,700 in restitution for Lesperance’s medical bills.

At the time of the attack, Klages was serving five years’ probation for stabbing a man at a bar in Ogdensburg and for attacking a man with a hammer in Potsdam.


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