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Stillwater Police Department apologizes after assault case closed

STILLWATER, Okla. (KFOR) – The Stillwater Police Department has apologized to a woman who says she was attacked and strangled at Walmart several months ago, but no arrests were made and no charges were filed.

The Payne County District Attorney’s Office says they were not made aware of the case until recently.

Nancy Nelson says she was at Walmart on May 30 when she asked a stranger to move a shopping cart. Nelson says she was trapped in her parking spot by a woman unloading groceries.

“I asked her nicely if she could move her cart so I could get out, but she said, ‘You`re just going to have to wait,'” Nelson told News 4. 

But Nelson got tired of waiting, so, she got out of her car and tried to move the cart herself.

“The next thing I knew she had me pinned against her car with her hands around my throat, sitting there calling me all sorts of names, all sorts of obscenity,” Nelson said.

Nelson was left with scratches across her neck, a knot on her head and bruises down her leg.

“The next thing I knew she had me pinned against her car with her hands around my throat, sitting there calling me all sorts of names, all sorts of obscenity.”

But five months later, her alleged attacker hasn’t been arrested or charged.

“They said they would try and investigate it, again nothing. This happened four times – I was told four times they would get back to me, but not once did they call,” she said.

According to Stillwater Chief of Police Jeff Watts, the officer assigned to investigate the case closed the case, saying he was not able to determine who the aggressor was in the incident.

The case was not presented to the Payne County District Attorney’s Office for review or charges.

Watts says the department failed to submit the case to the district attorney’s office for review or advise Nelson that the case was closed.

On Thursday, the department presented the case to the district attorney’s office.

Watts says he contacted Nelson “and apologized for the frustration she has endured and took responsibility for the case not being presented to the District Attorney’s Office before now.”

“I let her know we were taking measures to ensure this did not happen again,” he said.

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