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Dec 20, 2016 4:33 PMPublication: The Southampton Press

Ludwick Attorneys Seek Dismissal Of Multiple Charges Connected To Fatal Crash In 2015

Sean Ludwick at his court appearance in January of 2016. POOL PHOTO EDWARD BETZ
Dec 22, 2016 9:19 AM

Attorneys for Sean Ludwick filed a motion asking the court to dismiss a number of charges against him, arguing that the grand jury was not presented with evidence showing that Mr. Ludwick was the operator of a vehicle involved in a fatal accident in the summer of 2015.

The part-time Bridgehampton resident is accused of crashing his car while driving drunk and then dragging and leaving his passenger, Paul Hansen of Sag Harbor, dead on the side of the road on August 30, 2015.

Mr. Ludwick faces 3 counts of aggravated vehicular homicide, a felony, for which he could face a total of between 8 1/3 years to 25 years in prison if convicted. One of the counts was added because of a previous conviction of driving while ability impaired by alcohol. He has also been charged with first-degree vehicular manslaughter, leaving the scene of a fatal accident, and second-degree manslaughter for recklessly causing the death of another person, all felonies. He could face a possible 2 1/3 years to 7 years in prison for the for the leaving the scene of an accident charge, meaning he faces a total possible sentence of 10 2/3 years to 32 years in prison, according to prosecutors.

Lesser charges include one count of aggravated misdemeanor DWI, two counts of misdemeanor DWI, and one count each of reckless driving, speeding, failure to stay in a single lane and driving on the shoulder of the road.

The motion was filed by Mr. Ludwick’s lawyers, who were led by William Keahon, a criminal defense lawyer based in Hauppauge, with the State Supreme Court in Central Islip on Thursday, December 15, seeking relief from many of the charges.

“The people failed to provide any evidence to the grand jury that the defendant was operating the vehicle at the time of the accident,” the court documents state. “The testimony turned over to the defendant consisted entirely of the testimony of Donald Doller,” the motion document say, referring to an expert witness who testified before the grand jury about the position of the passenger’s body.

“This testimony was entirely related to the position that, after the motor vehicle accident, the victim’s body appeared to have moved. Mr. Doller did not testify about the manner of operation of the vehicle, circumstances surrounding the crash or who the operator of the vehicle was at the time of the crash.”

The defense attorneys requested dismissal of 10 out of 13 charges against Mr. Ludwick and specifically called for the dismissal of the three homicide charges against him.

Robert Clifford, a spokesman for Suffolk County District Attorney Thomas Spota, said the practice of filing motions is typical before a trial, and is a matter of course. Prosecutors will respond, he said, adding, “We are confident the evidence establishes the fact [that] the defendant was driving the vehicle.”

In a statement by Mr. Ludwick on November 28 that was filed with the court, he said he was asked questions by Southampton Town Police officers without being read his Miranda rights, was never informed of the rights and implications of accepting or refusing a chemical test, and repeatedly asked to speak with his attorney, which he was never allowed to do. He also said a search of his vehicle was conducted without his consent.

After the August 2015 crash, police said they found Mr. Ludwick standing next to his damaged Porsche convertible on Woodvale Street in Sag Harbor, about a quarter mile from the place where the accident occurred on Rolling Hill Court East. He was heading toward his Bridgehampton home, police said, and they traced trails of fluid and gouged pavement marks from the damaged car rims back to the accident scene, where Mr. Hansen, a father of two young boys, was found dead.

According to prosecutors, Mr. Ludwick’s blood-alcohol level was 0.18 percent, more than double the legal limit, when tested four hours after the accident occurred. But the defense maintains that an independent lab test of the blood sample determined Mr. Ludwick’s blood alcohol level was 0.16 percent—a key difference, since the blood-alcohol content was below 0.18 percent, a requirement for vehicular manslaughter in the first degree. As a result, the defense asked the court to dismiss that charge.

Calls to Mr. Keahon were not immediately returned.

Conferences between Justice Fernando Camacho and the attorneys are scheduled for January 19 at the Central Islip courthouse.

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“The people failed to provide any evidence to the grand jury that the defendant was operating the vehicle at the time of the accident,”

What a moronic statement. This is exactly why some lawyers are so despised.
By Harbor Master (105), Sag Harbor on Dec 20, 16 7:48 PM
2 members liked this comment
C'mon the guy who killed the corrections officer at Publick House is out free and living a wonderful life. This guy's gonna walk too unless the courts makes him pay.
By lirider (270), Hampton Bays on Dec 20, 16 9:13 PM
Common dude you killed your friend, been busted for dwi before, and trying to sleeze yourself out of going to prison for murder. Freakin loser.
By chief1 (2725), southampton on Dec 21, 16 1:16 PM
2 members liked this comment
Whats a "common" dude?
By But I'm a blank! (1283), Hampton Bays on Dec 21, 16 2:02 PM
Auto correct dude
By chief1 (2725), southampton on Dec 21, 16 7:29 PM
1 member liked this comment
"Mr. Hansen, a father of two young boys, " I knew and liked Paul but the reporter is clearly pandering for sympathy with that bit -- injecting himself into the story. The charge has nothing to do with the lifestyle of the deceased. He could have been an ax murderer, the charges would be the same. The writer is clearly looking for the reader to condemn the accused. He is no more or less guilty, if the deceased left a family behind. In the eyes of the law it is completely irrelevant.
By fire11 (276), east hampton on Dec 21, 16 10:32 PM
you sound like a lawyer! and I am not a fan of them at this point! Monthly we go and sit there and nothing happens the lawyers come up with nonsense to delay the process and twist facts-It is unbelievable-And the fact is this ass may only get 18months or so-Time served (yeah only because he ran and made people angry enough so they alerted the police) Ran twice actually great person! His lawyers are grasping and it is sickening-
By hansencgh (2), Sag Harbor on Dec 23, 16 7:44 AM
If this creep only gets 18 months or so our whole village is going to be in an uproar! So many of us have been wondering what the H--- is going on. I am sickened by this pathetic so called human being and our judicial system!! Hugs to your whole family.
By disappointed (96), wainscott on Dec 30, 16 5:06 PM
Fire 11 that is the most disgusting post ever on 27 east.
By chief1 (2725), southampton on Dec 23, 16 12:42 PM
chief uno... I vote for your post above as the most "disgusting" post that I've seen on this site. You really don't seem to understand what has made this country the free democracy that it is.

I think it's time for you to go back where you belong....Russia as your political bent is more in line with Putin and his small handed friend from Queens. Why is it that men of weak character always feel more comfortable with a dictator in power?

do svidaniya tovarishch

By Just sitting on the taffrail (36), Southampton on Dec 24, 16 4:16 PM
2 members liked this comment
nope, go back and look at yours.
By But I'm a blank! (1283), Hampton Bays on Dec 30, 16 7:32 PM
the car was driving itself and the dirt bag was hitchhiking will be the next motion.
By xtiego (696), bridgehampton on Dec 24, 16 4:13 PM
1 member liked this comment
The free democracy it is? This country's justice system is based on your income. Rob a gas station steal 50 bucks you get 5 years. Drive your Porsche drunk and murder your friend maybe 18 months in prison. Sure its a free system thats how we are conditioned to think.
By chief1 (2725), southampton on Dec 27, 16 10:16 AM
This motion by the Ludwick camp is complete nonsense and ridiculous. If you weren't driving your car Mr. Ludwick, then why leave the accident scene? A normal person would pick up their phone and dial 911 to get help. A heartless beast, would likely leave the scene to attempt to protect themselves from prosecution.
By peacemaker (22), Sag Harbor on Dec 27, 16 4:01 PM
1 member liked this comment
Its a typical tactic to delay and delay on the defense side in order to lose all the attention on a case.. The defense will look for any hole they can slide through. Ludwick has the $$ so they will look to minimize his demise and $$ pays for alot of research. However there are still facts and facts are facts. Its up to you to keep fanning the flames. Be relentless.
By North Sea Citizen (538), North Sea on Jan 1, 17 8:40 AM
So the damaged car drove itself away from the scene? Nice try counselor.

If the deceased were single and childless, his death would matter less? Nice try silly reporter.
By smacw (239), New York on Jan 3, 17 2:55 PM
8k run & 3 mile walk, Agawam Park, Southampton Rotary Club fundraiser