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JUDGE ORDERS DRIVING LICENSE SUSPENDED IN ADAMY CASE PROSECUTOR SAYS DRIVER IN FATAL CRASH WAS DRUNK

A judge Monday suspended the driver's license of the man charged in the collision that took the life of an Amherst police officer after a prosecutor said a blood test showed he was well above the legal limit for driving while intoxicated.

Prosecutor Therese R. Wincott told Tonawanda Town Justice Christopher J. Burns that a medical blood test performed on Mark T. Ziriakus within about an hour of the fatal collision showed his blood-alcohol level was .17 percent. The state's legal limit is .10 percent for driving while intoxicated.

Ziriakus, 32, of Grandview Drive, Amherst, is charged with vehicular manslaughter, drunken driving and making an improper turn in the crash that killed Lt. Joseph F. Adamy, 39, a 13-year-police veteran.

Law enforcement sources said Ziriakus, who suffered minor injuries in the crash, voluntarily submitted to a blood test after allegedly disputing the need for a breath test at the scene of the accident.

Burns ordered Ziriakus' license suspended indefinitely after a hearing on the matter.

Ziriakus, a tire company employee, is free on $25,000 bail.

Adamy was driving south on Niagara Falls Boulevard near Koenig Road at 1:30 a.m. Saturday when, police said, Ziriakus' pickup truck made a U-turn at Koenig and struck the driver's side of Adamy's police car, pushing it into a utility pole.

The accident occurred on the Tonawanda side of the boulevard.

Erie County District Attorney Kevin M. Dillon, citing fair trial mandates, refused Monday to release copies of state law enforcement reports which would show whether Ziriakus has any prior arrests.

Mrs. Wincott told Justice Burns that a hearing in the case scheduled to take place Friday may have to be adjourned because police are still investigating the fatal crash.

After the court session, Mrs. Wincott declined comment on whether police have traced all of Ziriakus' movements yet.

Meanwhile, the Amherst Police Club has begun a fund to benefit Adamy's five children.

Those desiring to make donations should make checks payable to: APC Inc. for the Adamy Children. Donations can be sent to: APC Inc., P.O. Box 205, Williamsville N.Y., 14231. Lt. Kevin Hoffman of the Amherst police is the chairman of the fund.

A Mass of Christian Burial for Adamy will be offered in St. John Maron Catholic Church, 2040 Wehrle Drive, Amherst, at 10 a.m. today after prayers at 9:30 in the Beach-Tuyn Funeral Home, 5541 Main St., Williamsville.

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