Taxi driver and company sued over passenger's assault five years ago; Plaintiff claims memories had been repressed

Ann Maher Mar. 14, 2012, 10:15am

A Collinsville woman claims she was drugged and touched in a highly offensive manner after a taxi driver failed to take her to a concert in St. Louis more than five years ago.

Kendra Wessell filed suit in Madison County on March 5 against driver Robert J. Wheeler and Riverbend Taxi.

She claims memories of the incident which allegedly occurred on Jan. 27, 2007, had been repressed.

Wessell alleges that Wheeler was supposed to have taken her to a concert at the Family Arena in St. Charles, but instead drove her to an unknown location in or near St. Louis.

"That Plaintiff questioned why she was not being driven to the concert, and Defendant Wheeler falsely told her that the concert was over and there was no need to drive her to the concert," the complaint states.

"That Defendant Wheeler ultimately stopped the taxi at a bar believed to be in Saint Louis, and Plaintiff exited the taxi, went into the bar and called for a ride to take her home.

"That while waiting for a ride home, Plaintiff ordered a drink from the bar."

Wessell claims she had lost consciousness and that her drink "probably" contained the date rape drug "Rohypnol."

She claims that when she awoke she was at her home in Collinsville in a state of undress and in the presence of Wheeler "who had touched Plaintiff in a highly offensive and harmful manner," the complaint states.

She is asking that a two-year statute of limitations be lifted because "she was physically and emotionally unable to file this action until recently, including but not limited to being in a catatonic state for long periods of time, repressing memories of the event and due to the intimidation of Defendant Wheeler."

Messages have been left seeking comment from Wheeler and Riverbend Taxi.

Wessell is represented by Wood River attorney Thomas Maag.

Madison County case number 12-L-286

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