WHAM13 - Search Results
Drugs could keep him out of jail
Rochester, N.Y. --- Police found a missing mans body partially buried in the backyard of a psychiatrists home in January. Now that doctor could avoid jail time because police reportedly found baggies of cocaine hidden in a shoe inside that doctors home.
If Dr. William Lewek is admitted into a Judicial Diversion Program (JDP) for drug addicts, the outcome of the two felony charges he now faces could be reduced to a misdemeanor. Often an outcome in Drug Court for cases like this involve little or no jail time, probation, and sometimes a persons criminal record is wiped clean.
In January, Rochester Police Investigators discovered the partially buried body of Matthew Straton in the backyard of Dr. Leweks Rowley Street home. Straton was reported missing in October 2013. Investigators believe he died shortly after he was last seen and Dr. Lewek reportedly told police he then moved Stratons body from the third floor of his home to the backyard where he buried it.
A two-day search of Leweks home also revealed seventeen small zip-lock style baggies of cocaine hidden inside a sneaker.
Dr. Lewek was in court on Thursday when Monroe County Judge Vincent DiNolfo said he would review the case file once its complete and possibly render a decision when Lewek returns to court next month.
Judge DiNolfo is waiting to review reports and documents concerning Dr. Leweks clinical eligibility for Drug Court. Whether he legally qualifies is something lawyers will continue to debate.
"I truly hope that we don't end up in a situation where he's in the program whether he's clinically eligible or not, said Monroe Countys First Assistant District Attorney Kelly Wolford. His crimes don't fit why we have this program and he needs to be held accountable in a regular criminal court."
He fits right dead smack middle of what JDP does," said Dr. Leweks lawyer Matt Parrinello. "Guilt or innocence whatever it is, we believe that any substance abuse (or) mental health issues are collaterally involved with the Tampering with Evidence charge."
Dr. Lewek faces a two-count indictment for Tampering with Physical Evidence and Criminal Possession of a Controlled Substance. If convicted of both felony charges he could face up to ten years in prison.
"If he's admitted into drug court and he successfully completes (treatment) he can receive a misdemeanor, he could have the case dismissed, it's really up to the contract that we sign ultimately if he gets in, said Parrinello.
We've objected since day one to (him) being in the program, we don't feel it's appropriate be it legally or under the circumstances of this case, countered Wolford.
A large number Matthew Stratons friends and family again showed up at court on Thursday. Theyve made their presence known at each one of Dr. Leweks court appearances and have been demanding answers and justice. How Straton actually died remains under investigation and an autopsy and toxicology report is still pending.
"Matt is dead and this man was the last one to see him and the last one to have something to do with him so we have to make sure that Matt gets justice, said Kym Straton, Matthews mother, who is outraged that Leweks case could be moved to drug court.
"I think it's ridiculous, added Kym Straton. It is like saying anybody can go and commit any kind of a crime and cop to the, I've got a drug problem put me in this program, it's ridiculous.