The owner of a tree removal company faces three to seven years in a state prison for creating workplace conditions that led to a worker fatality.
A jury found Maurice Buzzell guilty of negligent homicide and a misdemeanor reckless conduct charge in the death of 22-year-old Jon Paul LaVigueur.
Buzzell owns and operates Buzzell Tree Service.
In August 2007, LaVigueur was struck in the head and torso by parts of an 80-foot pine tree. He was part of a four-person team pulling down the tree. As it started to fall, LaVigueur apparently ran in the same direction it fell.
Former employees testified they were taught by Buzzell not to move out of the way until a tree started to fall.
Prosecutors said Buzzell required employees to stand within the fall zone of trees they were pulling down.
At first the business owner claimed he wasn’t present when the tree was pulled down. Later he admitted he tied ropes together used by the men to bring the tree down.
Buzzell paid $12,500 in OSHA fines.
His sentencing date hasn’t been set.