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Statement by Joseph Friedberg: All Criminal Charges Dismissed Against William Wanner

Unprecedented Filing Accompanied Case Dismissal

MINNEAPOLIS, Nov. 5, 2012 /PRNewswire/ -- This morning the State of Minnesota by Hennepin County dismissed the three year old case of State v Wanner. The State's case amounted to claims that Mr. Wanner, a prominent and highly successful businessman, had sexually molested a minor female at the Minneapolis Club.

"The tragedy of this case is that due to improper and incomplete investigation on the front end, together with the complete lack of evidence of any criminal wrongdoing -- it never should have been brought in the first place," commented Joseph Friedberg, counsel for Mr. Wanner. "Even more outrageous, the manner in which this case was dismissed was something I have never seen in my more than 45 years of practice."

In effect, it is speculated that for purely political reasons, Mr. Freeman's office has chosen to file a dismissal document that rather than simply dismiss the case, instead reiterates all the outrageous and untrue allegations that the State acknowledges they couldn't prove in court.

This is precisely the type of conduct that gives our criminal justice system a bad name.  "My personal and business reputation has been greatly damaged, even though I am innocent of all the charges brought against me," said William Wanner. "My family has suffered greatly over the last three years. Shockingly, the State permitted this miscarriage to go on for years before finally, today, three years later, in an obvious attempt to save face, filed this dismissal which reiterated all the thoroughly discredited claims against me that they can't prove."

A brief recitation of the facts further reinforces the view that this case was a travesty of justice from the beginning. The videos, the supposed "smoking guns" revealed no sexual contact between Mr. Wanner and the minor. Likewise, the interview conducted at "Corner House" produced a clear statement by the minor that there had no untoward conduct by Mr. Wanner.

The bottom line is that the State's entire case appeared to rest on a later interviews the minor had with a police officer. An officer who was on his own private crusade to discredit the minor's story that nothing untoward had occurred at the Minneapolis Club.

Five judges have listened to and looked at the tapes and determined they were so coercive and overbearing that they were unworthy of belief to the point that they would mislead the jury if received into evidence. This was, sadly, the evidence the State relied upon to relentlessly hound Mr. Wanner for more than three years.

Prosecutors enjoy tremendous power in our system. They are charged with the responsibility of prosecuting criminals and equally important–doing justice.

Sadly, in the case Mr. Freeman failed miserably on both counts.

The question remains: where does Mr. Wanner now go to get back his good name?


SOURCE Joseph Friedberg

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