LOCKPORT – A Lockport man charged with the attempted murder of a 7-year-old girl on New Year’s Eve lost his attorney Friday because of a conflict of interest.

Assistant Public Defender Michele G. Bergevin was removed as the attorney for David L. Alfonso because a prosecution witness had once been represented by the Public Defender’s Office. The Niagara County Conflict Defender’s Office will take up Alfonso’s case, County Judge Sara Sheldon Farkas ordered.

Farkas also revoked Alfonso’s telephone privileges at the County Jail, after Assistant District Attorney Elizabeth R. Donatello reported that Alfonso had been phoning the victim and her mother, allegedly trying to persuade them not to testify against him.

The woman was Alfonso’s girlfriend at the time of the incident, in which he allegedly choked the girl into unconsciousness before the woman attacked him with a knife. She was not charged.