Family of Molly’s Pub victim “devastated”

BUFFALO, N.Y. (WIVB) — Loved ones of Air National Guardsman Bill Sager, who was fatally pushed down a flight of stairs at Molly’s Pub last May, will likely have to relive the nightmare of his death.

State Supreme Court Justice Penny Wolfgang has vacated the second degree murder conviction against Jeffrey Basil, the bar manager who was found guilty of second degree murder in January.

“It’s very very devastating for us,” said Bill Sager’s grandfather Richard Zulick.

Justice Wolfgang set aside the verdict after it was learned that a juror had not disclosed that she had been in the military and that she had an arrest record.

“You would have thought there was enough evidence there,” Zulick said, referring to Basil’s trial. “Hopefully if they have a new trial, justice will be served.”

Sager’s Aunt, Patty Crissman, said the family never expected anything like this to happen after Basil’s conviction.

“We thought we had closure and now it’s going to start all over again,” she said.

Sager’s Uncle, Tim Crissman, agreed, the family is shocked.

“You would have thought they would have crossed all their ‘t’s’ and dotted their “i’s” before they went ahead with a trial,” he said.

Bill Sager’s fiance, Erika Webster, broke out in tears and slowly shook her head, as Justice Wolfgang read her decision.

Webster had appeared at several vigils for Bill Sager during the two months he remained in a coma. provides commenting to allow for constructive discussion on the stories we cover. In order to comment here, you acknowledge you have read and agreed to our Terms of Service. Commenters who violate these terms, including use of vulgar language or racial slurs, will be banned. Please be respectful of the opinions of others. If you see an inappropriate comment, please flag it for our moderators to review. Note: Comments containing links are not allowed.

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