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Charges against attorney reduced

Charges of driving while intoxicated against Lockport Town Attorney Daniel E. Seaman were reduced in City Court on Monday.

"A reduced charge of [driving while ability impaired] appears to more appropriate," said Susan Silleman, an Orleans County assistant district attorney assigned to prosecute the case because Seaman's son, Brian, is a Niagara County ADA.

Seaman, 65, of Appleton, was arrested after state troopers said they found his pickup stuck in the mud beside Crosby Road in the Town of Lockport shortly after 10 p.m. March 30. Seaman refused to take chemical or field sobriety tests.

The case was moved to Niagara Falls after judges in the Town of Lockport recused themselves to avoid a conflict. Silleman told City Court Judge Mark A. Violante that she went to the scene Monday morning, prior to court, and noted that Seaman had driven off of the road at a sharp turn where witnesses were prepared to testify that there have been other accidents.

"There was no blood-alcohol test, no field sobriety test and no observation of erratic driving," Silleman said. She also said she reduced the charges because there had been no admission of guilt and no evidence of drinking in the vehicle.

Lockport Supervisor Marc R. Smith said shortly after Seaman's arrest that the charges will not affect Seaman's tenure as town attorney.

Seaman is a partner in the Lockport law firm of Seaman, Jones, Hogan & Brooks. He has been Lockport town attorney since 2000. He also is a municipal attorney for the Town of Hartland and villages of Barker and Middleport.

He is scheduled to return to court Sept. 20.