Safe Act indictment dismissed in Chautauqua County Court


A Safe Act-related indictment against Silver Creek resident Benjamin Wassell was dismissed Monday in Chautauqua County Court.

Wassell was convicted of felony Safe Act charges, after authorities say he sold a semi-automatic rifle to an undercover state trooper.

Back in April, his conviction was overturned by an appellate division court, based on lack of jurisdiction. The case went back to county court, where the overall indictment was dismissed, and his files sealed.

Wasselll’s Lawyer says this gives him the clean slate he needs to move on with his life.

“This isn’t procedural, this isn’t a technicality, Mr. Wassell has been completely and fully vindicated both by the court but also by our appellate arguments,” said Jim Ostrowski.

Wassell, who is a Marine Veteran, says case has turned his life upside down.

“This ordeal has caused me to lose my job,” he said. “I was in consideration for a federal job, a really good federal job, and that was taken away from me after the arrest.

“I spent three years on probation. I couldn’t leave the county without permission. I missed out on a lot of things with the family, there were things we couldn’t do together. They had to go by themselves I had to stay home.”

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