CITY SETTLEMENT: $22.5K For Man Wrongly Arrested

Des Moines City Council agreed to cut a check to a metro man, wrongly arrested in the vicious attack of a popular runner.

The bar fight forever changed the lives of three people – the victim, the attacker, and the man who was wrongly accused. Now that man, Stuart Wohlford Wessels, is getting a little justice.

In November of 2011, police arrested Wohlford Wessels, charging him with attacking popular local runner Forey Jacobson at Johnny’s Hall of Fame bar.  Three months later, police dropped the charges against Wohlford Wessels after reviewing the security tape and talking with witnesses.

“There’s a human error, unfortunately, in this.  It’s a unique case in Des Moines.  But, certainly we feel bad that he was arrested based on the statements that were made that night,” Sgt. Chris Scott said.

Another man, Benjamin Vogl, eventually pleaded guilty to the assault. He got a five-year prison sentence.  Monday night, the City Council agreed to pay Wohlford Wessles $22,500.

Wessels did not respond to our request for a comment.  But the private investigator his family hired to help clear him says between legal bills and the emotional toll the charges took the pay-out isn’t nearly enough.

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