Charges dropped against man accused of molesting women in south city

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ST. LOUIS – Charges against a man suspected of grabbing several women in Tower Grove South have been dropped.

Prosecutors had charged John Wells back in June with attempted sodomy, misdemeanor sexual abuse and misdemeanor assault.

At least five women reported to police that a strange man ran up behind them, grabbed their buttocks and then ran away laughing or smiling. In some of the cases, women reported the man slipped his hand up their shorts or dresses and forcefully grabbed their private area. In each case, he reportedly ran to his silver SUV, left running and parked in a nearby alley.

The attacks happened in a three-week period between May 25 to June 16 in the Tower Grove South neighborhood.

Susan Ryan, a spokesperson for Prosecuting Attorney Kim Gardner, wrote in a statement that the case remains under active investigation and, "We have plans to reissue the charges as soon as possible. If anyone has information regarding these incidents, we encourage them to contact police or our office."