Son requests protective order from father being investigated in wife's death
Tom Smart, Deseret News
SALT LAKE CITY — Pelle Wall, 18, believes his father killed his mother. And now, following a recent confrontation with his father, he wants a protective order from the man.
Earlier this year after he turned 18, Wall moved out of his father's house and into the home of John and Amy Oglesby. Later, he took legal action to also have his siblings removed from John Wall's house while Salt Lake police investigated the death of their mother, Uta von Schwedler. The ongoing legal battles have resulted in numerous court hearings.
Last month, John Wall allegedly came face-to-face with his son and Amy Oglesby in an angry outburst in public, away from the courtroom.
On Aug. 18, John Brickman Wall confronted the two at the Salt Lake City International Airport and again a short time later at a Salt Lake fast food establishment, according to a Salt Lake police report. Wall angrily told his oldest son he had caused "substantial damage to their family," the report states.
Von Schwedler, a 49-year-old University of Utah scientist, was found dead in an overflowing bathtub in her home on Sept. 27, 2011. Her cause of death was determined by the medical examiner to be drowning. But because of many suspicious circumstances found in the home and during her autopsy, the manner of her death — whether it was homicide or suicide — could not be determined.
Salt Lake police have said their investigation into the case is ongoing, but they have released few other details. Court documents indicate they are investigating the death as a homicide.
Many questions have surrounded von Schwedler's ex-husband because of his reported peculiar behavior following her death. Von Schwedler and Wall divorced in 2006, but a bitter custody battle regarding their four children persisted.
After Pelle Wall moved out of his father's house, he then filed a motion in juvenile court to have his siblings — then ages 16, 13 and 11 — also removed from his father's house until Salt Lake police completed their investigation. One of the siblings recently turned 17.
An undisclosed custody agreement was reached and the three children are currently living with a guardian at a location away from their father's home.
Following the alleged confrontations on Aug. 18, separate police cases were opened for both Pelle Wall and Amy Oglesby. The Deseret News filed open records requests for reports from both cases. A report for Pelle Wall's case was released, but Salt Lake police declined to release a report on Oglesby's case, contending that it was part of an ongoing investigation.
Oglesby, however, said she doesn't know why her case was considered ongoing and Pelle's wasn't. She provided the Deseret News with a copy of the email that she sent to police reporting the incident in detail. In it, she describes how she, Pelle Wall and two of his siblings were at the airport to pick up the fourth sibling who had been away and was flying back home. John Wall also arrived at the airport separately.
Pelle Wall said his father confronted Oglesby in a "hostile manner," according to the police report, telling her she wasn't the childrens' parent and using profanity with her.
Oglesby said in her email to police that Wall "upset the children," said the guardian appointed to watch over the three siblings told him to stop, and that "he was ruining his daughter's homecoming, and that 'it wasn't about him.'"
The Wall children and Oglesby left the airport to go to a restaurant near 650 East and 400 South. Moments after they arrived, John Wall also entered, "leading Pelle to believe that John had followed them from the airport," the police report states.
Oglesby told police that Wall again verbally attacked her, saying, "'Stay the (expletive deleted) away from me! You are damaging me! You don't know what you're doing!' It was meant as a direct threat, with implications that he will damage me ... like I am his new target of hatred," she wrote.
Pelle told police that's when his father also told him that he had caused "substantial damage to their family."
Oglesby said Wall went back and forth between her and Pelle with his anger.
"I never, at any time, uttered a single word to Johnny. I believe that he was angry because I didn't come across as defeated, scared or weak. I was able to maintain eye contact with Johnny, which added to his fury. I believe that his intent was to threaten me and Pelle in the same manner that he threatened Uta von Schwedler. Now that she is gone, he has transferred his anger and hatred to others, and Pelle and I are most certainly at the top of his list," she wrote.
Both Oglesby and Pelle Wall filed for protective orders. She said her request was denied because certain criteria hadn't been met. Pelle reportedly applied for a protective order in juvenile court where the other proceedings were already taking place, but the outcome of that request is not public record, according to court spokeswoman Nancy Volmer.
The one-year anniversary of von Schwedler's death will be marked with a candlelight vigil on Sept. 27 and a bike ride and pot luck lunch on Sept. 29.
Attempts to reach Howard Lundgren, John Wall's attorney, were unsuccessful Friday. A message on his voicemail said he was out of the office until next week.
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