Chelsa Wagner jailed in Detroit after police altercation, attorney says
Allegheny County Controller Chelsa Wagner spent Tuesday night in a Detroit jail after an altercation with police in a hotel where she and her husband were staying during a belated Valentine’s Day celebration, her attorney said.
Attorney Heather Heidelbaugh said Thursday that Wagner, 42, of Point Breeze has not been charged with a crime. Detroit police did not respond Thursday to inquiries about Wagner and her husband, Khari Mosley, 43.
“They arrested her. They took her to a detention facility,” Heidelbaugh said. “She was released the next day. They have not charged her with anything. There was no warrant that was issued. She has no idea what’s going to happen.”
Detroit police Chief James Craig told the Detroit News that body camera footage will show the officers acted appropriately.
Heidelbaugh said the couple attended a performance of the Detroit Symphony Orchestra featuring rapper Nas on Tuesday evening. They returned to the Westin Book Cadillac Hotel in downtown Detroit. Wagner went to bed around 10:30 p.m., but Mosley said he was not tired and remained in the hotel lobby.
Heidelbaugh said Wagner responded to a knock at the door wearing socks and pajamas around 1 a.m. and found police with Mosley in handcuffs. Mosley left his key card in the room and hotel staff would not allow him to return because he was not listed as a guest, she said.
He attempted to call Wagner on her cellphone, but she didn’t answer, Heidelbaugh said. Hotel staff also called the room without success.
Heidelbaugh said the officers informed Wagner they were removing Mosley from the property and began escorting him down a hallway. An officer grabbed her and threw her on the ground when she attempted to get on an elevator, Heidelbaugh said.
“She did not touch the officer and her husband was not under arrest,” Heidelbaugh said. “She has bruises all over her. She has a bruised wrist and a sore back. She is traumatized.”
Craig told the Detroit News that video evidence will tell a different tale.
“She grabbed officer’s jacket first; she was interfering and tried to block the elevator,” Craig told the newspaper. “The officers were being very polite, saying ‘ma’am, please.’ At some point she decided to grab the officer, and he pushed her off him. She started to fall, and the officer tried to grab her to break her fall, because he didn’t want her to be injured.”
Detroit police later released Mosley but ordered him to leave the hotel, Heidelbaugh said.
They returned to Pittsburgh Wednesday after Wagner was released.
Bob Bauder is a Tribune-Review staff writer. You can contact Bob at 412-765-2312, [email protected] or via Twitter .