A 40-year-old Cincinnati man who reportedly assaulted three Walmart patrons in November without provocation is serving local jail time after pleading guilty to assault.
Daniel J. Wheeler, 40, was indicted by a grand jury on two counts of felonious assault and one count of first-degree misdemeanor assault. As part of an agreement, the Fayette County Prosecutor’s Office dropped the felonious assault counts and secured a guilty plea to the misdemeanor count.
On Feb. 11 in Fayette County Common Pleas Court, Wheeler was sentenced to 180 days in the Fayette County Jail. The victims in the case were agreeable with the sentence, according to Fayette County Prosecutor Jess Weade.
At around 7:20 p.m. Nov. 13, a Washington C.H. Police Department officer responded to the local Walmart, 1397 Leesburg Ave., in reference to a report of a male inside the business assaulting customers. All three victims told the officer that they were assaulted by the defendant, who was later identified as Wheeler.
According to the victims and witnesses, Wheeler yielded a metal shelving bar while inside Walmart, and without warning struck a 67-year-old woman in the back and a 34-year-old man in the arm, all in the same strike. Wheeler then allegedly proceeded toward a 15-year-old male and punched him in the upper chest/neck area.
These assaults occurred for an unknown reason and without warning, victims and witnesses said.
According to the police report, all three victims sustained redness and soreness from the assaults.
The incident occurred near the front of the business just behind the cash registers and some if it was captured by Walmart’s video surveillance.
Wheeler served 87 days in the Fayette County Jail prior to his sentencing and the sentence will be reduced accordingly.
Reach Ryan Carter at 740-313-0352.