Felony charges could be dismissed for visitors accused in seal harassment

Two men who were arrested for allegedly harassing a monk seal in Lahaina could have felony charges dismissed if they make donations to a federal agency responsible for managing ocean resources.

Daniel Davison, 21, of Springville, Utah, and Lucas Meister, 38, of Wickenburg, Ariz., are required to donate $1,000 each to the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration, as part of a deferred prosecution agreement. 

Another condition of the agreement is that the men not harass another marine mammal, said Deputy Prosecutor Carson Tani.

Davison and Meister were arrested after several witnesses reported seeing the men trying to push a monk seal into the ocean near the seawall by Cheeseburger in Paradise on Front Street at about 10 p.m. Sept. 29, police said.

The seal was trying to bite the men as they attempted to push the endangered mammal, police said.

Attorney Graham Mottola, representing Meister, said his client had already made the $1,000 donation.

A Dec. 17 return date was set in 2nd Circuit Court for both men on the possible dismissal of the charges.

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