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Lockport veteran avoids prison in head-on crash that injured 3

Matthew W. Lukasik, an Army veteran of the Iraq and Afghanistan wars, will try to beat his opiate addiction in Niagara County Veterans Court as part of a five-year probation sentence handed down Thursday.

Failure in the program could lead to a prison term of up to seven years for Lukasik, 31, of Windermere Road, Lockport. He pleaded guilty to vehicular assault and drug-impaired driving in an April 15 head-on wreck on Ridge Road in Hartland that seriously injured two Newfane women and a 1-year-old boy. Lukasik also faces a civil suit.

State Supreme Court Justice Richard C. Kloch Sr. would not promise Lukasik a reduction in the felony charges if he completes the Veterans Court program. The prosecution recommended the program with the consent of the victims.

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