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Former Niagara County legislator pleads guilty following tire slashing outside Lockport tavern


Thu, Mar 28th 2024 06:30 pm

Submitted by the Erie County District Attorney’s Office

Erie County District Attorney John J. Flynn announced 58-year-old William J. Collins Sr. of Lockport pleaded guilty yesterday morning before Lockport City Judge William J. Watson to one count of harassment in the second degree (violation).

On Thursday, Oct. 26, 2023, at approximately noon, the defendant intentionally damaged the property of another person by slashing a tire on the passenger side of the victim’s pickup truck. The crime occurred while the victim’s vehicle was parked outside of a tavern on the 600 block of West Avenue in the City of Lockport.

In November 2023, the Niagara County District Attorney’s Office submitted a petition, requesting that the court appoint a special prosecutor to handle the prosecution of the case as the defendant was serving as a Niagara County legislator at the time of incident. Niagara County Court Judge Caroline A. Wojtaszek granted the order and appointed our office to serve as the special prosecutor.

Today, Collins received a one-year conditional discharge. In addition, Judge Watson ordered the defendant to serve 50 hours of community service, have no contact with the victim, live a law-abiding life, and pay $225 in restitution.

Flynn commends the City of Lockport Police Department for its work in this investigation.

The case was prosecuted by Assistant District Attorney William E. Szczepanski and Chief Danielle D’Abate of the justice courts bureau.

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