The Iowa Court of Appeals has overturned the conviction of Chicago police officer who was sentenced to five years in prison for punching a Dubuque man in 2005. Michael Mette was visiting his brother in Dubuque and admitted to hitting Jake Gothard in a confrontation in the street following a party.
Gothard was knocked unconscious and suffered several facial injuries. Mette said he hit Gothard in self defense after being repeatedly shoved and threatened. Iowa District Court Judge Monica Ackley found Mette guilty saying he had a duty to retreat from the scene.
Mette was sent to the state prison in Rockwell City. The appeals court ruled the district court was in error because the state did not disprove Mette’s claim of self defense as required by law. Fellow Chicago officers and other officials made trips to Iowa to plead his case. The state has 20 days to decide whether to ask the Iowa Supreme Court to review the case.