Accused serial groper convicted of sexual assaults

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John Wells

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ST. LOUIS – A St. Louis man accused of groping several women in south city back in 2017 was convicted Wednesday.

A jury found John Wells guilty of second-degree sodomy and second-degree attempted sodomy following a three-day trial.

According to our news partners at the St. Louis Post-Dispatch, Wells is scheduled to be back in court June 7 for a sentencing hearing. He faces up to a year in prison on each charge. Though it’s unclear if those sentences will run concurrently or consecutively, Wells will be required to register as a sex offender.

The attacks happened in a three-week period between May 25 to June 16, 2017, in the Tower Grove South and Benton Park West neighborhoods.

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, the victims reported the man slipped his hand up their shorts or dresses and forcefully grabbed their genitals. In each case, they said the man ran to a parked vehicle in a nearby alley that he’d left running.

The trial only covered charges on two of the incidents.

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