Former Ohio State football player Jim Stillwagon has filed a federal lawsuit against the City of Delaware and the police officer who arrested him for an alleged road-rage shooting in 2012.
A Delaware County judge last week dismissed the criminal charges against Stillwagon. He was charged with shooting at the driver of a pickup truck that passed him on State Route 42. Eyewitnesses said the truck's driver try to run Stillwagon off the road several times, and Stillwagon fired in self defense. The suit alleges false arrest, malicious prosecution, and defamation. Stillwagon says he has already spent 400 thousand dollars on the case, and hopes to repair the damage to his reputation and expose what he says is the police incompetence that led to the charges.
The driver of the pickup truck claimed Stillwagon assaulted him and fired at him in a parking lot moments after the incident. Stillwagon's attorney, Jim McNamara, says his client felt threatened.
Stillwagon says police detectives coached the driver and witnesses to make their case fit a predetermined scenario, and ignored witness statements that verified Stillwagon's version of what happened. Delaware city officials have declined comment. Stillwagon was a member of Ohio State's 1968 national championship team.