Judge: Haverstraw mayor was sober the night disgruntled cops charged him with DWAI

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(09/13/06) NEW CITY - Haverstraw Mayor Francis ?Bud? Wassmer was cleared Wednesday more than a year after police arrested him for drunk driving.

According to Wassmer, the arresting village police officers acted out of vengeance, angry about the vote five days earlier to disband the Haverstraw Village Police Department. On June 26, 2005, Haverstraw Village Police say they found Wassmer asleep in his minivan. When they woke him, they claimed, his eyes were bloodshot, yet they failed to perform a field sobriety test. In fact, the mayor?s attorney showed a video surveillance tape of Wassmer leaving a restaurant and driving away in his van without complication approximately 30 minutes prior to the arrest.

The presiding judge agreed with Wassmer?s attorney that the evidence against Haverstraw?s mayor was underwhelming. In criticizing the since-disbanded Haverstraw Village Police, he added that had Clarkstown Police or New York State Police been on the scene, standard field procedures would have been followed closely.

Wassmer expressed relief as his name was cleared as well as some remorse. He says he wished his wife, who passed away last year, could have been alive to witness his reputation restored.

Related information: Authorities say Haverstraw Village mayor arrested for DWAI New report surfaces saying Haverstraw mayor was asleep at the wheel Haverstraw mayor to appear in court next month on drinking and driving charges

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