A Wilmington man no longer faces charges of disorderly conduct and harassment in a case that resulted from a complaint filed by the president of Wilmington City Council.
Dion Wilson was arrested in October, days after he filed a Freedom of Information Act complaint against Council President Hanifa Shabazz. Shabazz prevented Wilson from speaking during public comment due to his use of profanity at a previous meeting.
The complaint alleged that Wilson made a threat toward Shabazz. Wilson, who hosts a podcast focused on Wilmington issues and is a frequent critic of city government, has denied ever making a threat. The terms of his arrest essentially barred him from attending council meetings until the case was resolved.
Wilson told WDEL News that police questioned him as he was still in his underwear, standing on his own front porch.
Monday, the Attorney General's office revealed that it would not pursue the case citing a lack of evidence and the unlikelihood of proving the case beyond a reasonable doubt.
Shabazz described to police an incident of a year earlier in which Wilson was escorted out of a City Council meeting and felt that a threat had been made afterwards.
In a statement Monday, Shabazz said she trusted the criminal justice system and respected the decision. She also added:
"No public official – male or female – should be threatened with violence or harassed while carrying out their public duties. I filed the criminal complaint, which resulted in Mr. Wilson’s arrest, as a measure of protection and to send a message that such behavior will not be tolerated by me as President of Wilmington City Council or by other members of the Council or our staff.
Wilmington City Council, as a body, welcomes constructive criticism but will not endure threats, harassment or unruly behavior. No public official should ever fear that their duties will result in an act of violence against them."
The Justice Department previously ruled that Wilson's FOIA complaint was valid regarding his being cut off during public comment at a September meeting.