NY man pleads not guilty to unlawful restraint

Wednesday June 12, 2013


Staff Writer

BENNINGTON -- A New York man was ordered held without bail Monday after he pleaded not guilty to accusations that he assaulted a former girlfriend.

Matthew Seymour, 24, of Eagle Bridge, pleaded not guilty in Bennington Superior Court Criminal Division to a felony count of second degree unlawful restraint on a person over 18, misdemeanor domestic assault, and interference with access to emergency services. Seymour will be held until a "weight of the evidence" hearing, where a judge will determine what, if any, conditions he can be released on.

According to an affidavit by Bennington Police Officer Thalia Hudson, on Saturday at 4:38 a.m. she went to the Southwestern Vermont Medical Center to speak with a woman who said she had been assaulted by Seymour. Hudson wrote that she observed some redness on the woman’s head and scratches elsewhere on her body. There was grass in her hair and her clothing was wet and muddy.

The woman said that between 3 and 3:30 a.m. she went to the house of her ex-boyfriend, Seymour, who was living on Benmont Avenue. She said prior to going to the house they were at a bar. She said they began to argue and so she went to sleep, but then heard him damaging a television in the living room. The woman said she tried to leave but Seymour pushed her down into some steps. She went to her car, but Seymour got to it first and locked its doors. She then went to a bathroom and did not lock the door because she feared Seymour would break the lock. She then tried to leave again and Seymour hit her head against a wall.

The woman said Seymour also prevented her from calling 911 on her cell phone. Once she was outside in a grassy area, she said Seymour slammed her head against the ground, tackled her, and dragged her. She got free of him and flagged down a passing driver who took her to the hospital.

She told police similar incidents have happened before and one was the reason they separated.

According to a supplemental affidavit by Bennington Police Officer Benjamin Lackey, on Monday at 5:41 a.m. Seymour was found and taken to the Bennington Police Department, where he told them that he and the woman went to an apartment on Benmont Avenue on Saturday, and got into an argument. He said she punched a television so he took it off the stand.

He said she then went outside and was yelling, so he picked her up and tried to carry her back to the apartment because he did not wish police to be called. He said she then fell and he could not get her back to the apartment. At that point he locked her car up, knowing there were keys in it and she had been drinking.

He denied hitting her or pushing her onto stairs.

Contact Keith Whitcomb Jr. at kwhitcomb@benningtonbanner.com or follow him on Twitter @KWhitcombjr


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