Sentencing before Cortland County Court Judge David Alexander Tuesday morning for Zachary Boutoille, 26, of Cortland.
He pleaded guilty in January to felony Attempted Robbery in connection with the November 26, 2016 robbery at the Cortlandville office of First National Bank of Dryden.
Boutoille is an Army combat veteran who served in Afghanistan and as one counselor wrote, “in horrific combat conditions, suffering the invisible mental health wounds of war.”
Boutoille repaid the money to the bank, more than $5,105.
Both the judge and Public Defender Keith Dayton remarked on the volume of letters of support that were part of the pre-sentence report.
Boutoille addressed the court prior to sentencing and said he is taking courses online and will earn an Associates Degree in Business from TC3 next year.
He pleaded with the judge to not send him to prison.
Boutoille, who is married with two young children, could have received a maximum four-year sentence.
In announcing his decision, Judge Alexander said Boutoille “needs guidance and training not prison,” and sentenced him to five years probation with a $2,500 fine.
Boutoille spoke briefly with reporters outside of court. “Thank you (to) the community for the overwhelming support that I got. I know it was a terrible situation, but it kind of got deeper than just a simple robbery. I’m glad that the mental illness and all these other factors were taken into account.”
He will continue receiving treatment from the VA. “I want to insure the community that just because I wasn’t incarcerated that I’m a danger to anyone. In face, I’m really willing to help, especially when it comes to mental illness.”