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Trial delayed in fatal car crash case

Nick Mineweaser

MAYVILLE – The trial involving a former Lakewood resident accused of driving under the influence of marijuana and causing an accident that claimed the life of a Cassadaga child has been further delayed.

The trial was originally scheduled to resume today. On Wednesday, Tracie Lorenzo, chief clerk of Chautauqua Supreme and County Courts, stated that the trial of Nicholas Mineweaser will be delayed until Dec. 9.

Mineweaser, 26, who now lives in Erie County with his mother, has been charged with second-degree vehicular manslaughter and driving while ability impaired by drugs. On Feb. 24, 2020, Mineweaser rear ended a vehicle on Route 60 in the town of Pomfret, driven by Shanna Wilcox that caused that vehicle to be struck by a tractor trailer. Her 7-year-old daughter, Emmaline, perished in the accident.

The non-jury trial began Nov. 1 in Mayville in front of Judge Paul Wojtaszek, who will make the final ruling on guilt or innocence.

Prosecuting the case is District Attorney Jason Schmidt and Assistant District Attorney Emily Woodard. Mineweaser is being represented by Buffalo attorney Michael Dwan.

The prosecution had rested its case on Nov. 12. During Dwan’s defense, he shared that his client had been injured in a crash five years ago, which he argued caused Mineweaser to do poorly on some of the physical sobriety tests, due to a herniated disc. He submitted paperwork to confirm the accident.

Schmidt objected to the documentation of Mineweaser’s injuries, saying they should have been introduced before the trial began.

However, Dwan argued in response that he was unaware of the crash earlier and the only reason he was introducing this evidence was because one of the officers accused Mineweaser of faking an injury to get out of taking the sobriety tests.

After the judge permitted the new evidence, Schmidt asked for a continuance, so he could review this new line of defense. Wojtaszek rescheduled the trial for Dec. 2.

Last month during court, Schmidt noted that he had a jury trial for Torrie Jones and Mikiak Moore scheduled to begin in mid-November. The two Erie County residents are each facing a count of second-degree criminal possession of a weapon. The two were accused of being involved in a Jamestown shooting from March 26, 2020.

Schmidt couldn’t be reached for comment Wednesday to say if this is what caused the delay for Mineweaser’s trial to resume or if it was another conflict.

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