Make us your home page

Today’s top headlines delivered to you daily.

(View our Privacy Policy)

Man found not guilty in downtown St. Pete stabbing

A man accused of attempted murder lost his effort to have the case thrown out under Florida's Stand Your Ground law on Wednesday, but he wasn't disappointed. By the end of the day Wednesday, a jury found William R. Wasel not guilty on charges of attempted murder and aggravated assault.

Wasel, 37, a St. Petersburg tattoo artist, was arrested after a 2012 incident inside and outside the Octave Bar, 661 Central Ave. Police said Wasel punched a man in the face and after others confronted him, stabbed a man.

Pinellas-Pasco Circuit Judge Philip Federico refused to throw out the case based on Stand Your Ground.

But in trial on Wednesday, Wasel testified that he was afraid for his life because he had been hit over the head by another man, and pulled out his pocketknife because he felt threatened. His attorney, Kelly McCabe, showed photos of the scars and scratches Wasel received on his head and face during the fighting.

Wasel faced 30 years in prison if convicted. He had been out on bail awaiting trial prior to the not guilty verdict.

"I thought the whole time it was self-defense," McCabe said.

Man found not guilty in downtown St. Pete stabbing 04/23/14 [Last modified: Wednesday, April 23, 2014 7:34pm]
Photo reprints | Article reprints

© 2017 Tampa Bay Times


Join the discussion: Click to view comments, add yours

  1. Trump's new order bars almost all travel from seven countries


    WASHINGTON — President Donald Trump on Sunday issued a new order banning almost all travel to the United States from seven countries, including most of the nations covered by his original travel ban, citing threats to national security posed by letting their citizens into the country.

    President Donald Trump speaks to reporters Sunday upon his return to the White House in Washington.
  2. Somehow, Rays' Chris Archer remains just shy of being an ace

    The Heater

    BALTIMORE — Chris Archer had another bad game Sunday.

    Chris Archer is sputtering to the finish line, his rough start on Sunday his fourth in his past five in which he hasn’t gotten past four innings.
  3. In Mexico City, hopes of finding quake survivors dwindle


    MEXICO CITY — Five days after the deadly magnitude 7.1 earthquake, the hulking wreckage of what used to be a seven-story office building is one of the last hopes: one of just two sites left where searchers believe they may still find someone trapped alive in Mexico City.

    Rescue workers search for survivors inside a felled office building in the Roma Norte neighborhood of Mexico City on Saturday.
  4. GOP health bill in major peril as resistance hardens among key senators


    WASHINGTON — The floundering Republican attempt to undo the Affordable Care Act met hardening resistance from key GOP senators Sunday that left it on the verge of collapse even as advocates vowed to keep pushing for a vote this week.

    Sen. Susan Collins, R-Maine, a moderate, said Sunday that it was “very difficult” to envision voting for this health-care bill.
  5. Baghdad orders Kurdistan region to hand over borders, ports


    BAGHDAD — Iraq's central government in Baghdad ordered the country's Kurdish region to hand over all border crossings and airports to federal government control late Sunday night, hours before the region is set to carry out a controversial referendum on support for independence.

    Iraqi Kurds climb the fence into a soccer stadium during a rally in Irbil, in the Kurdistan region of Iraq, on Friday. Kurds will vote in a referendum today on the creation of their own country.