Former Cop Accused of Punching Man Faces Federal Charges

July 21, 2010 Updated Jul 21, 2010 at 6:41 PM EDT

By John Borsa

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July 21, 2010 Updated Jul 21, 2010 at 6:41 PM EDT

BUFFALO, NY (WKBW) -- A former West Seneca police officer appeared in U.S. District Court on Wednesday to answer charges that he violated a man's civil rights during an alleged bar fight.

Sean Kelley pleaded not guilty at his arraignment. He declined to comment as he left the downtown courthouse.

Kelley was off-duty with his wife at Mackie's Countryside Inn on Clinton Street in West Seneca on March 12, when he got into a verbal argument with another patron, according the the criminal complaint.

Kelley called two on-duty police officers for back up, court documents said.

When the officers arrived, Kelley "ripped [the victim] off his seat, dragged him through the dining room, and out the back door to the parking lot," the criminal complaint said.

"[The victim] stated ... Kelley slammed his head into the wall a few times and punched him five or six times."

Kelley faces 10 years in federal prison and a $250,000 fine if convicted of the charges.